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Germany: Bundesliga
2 - 2
(1 - 1)
RB Leipzig
FC Köln
T. Werner (36), D. Szoboszlai (45), C. Nkunku (56), J. Gvardiol (72)
F. Dietz (40)

Tedesco discusses "ultra competitive" midfield logjam

By Peter Weis   @PeterVicey

Asked when high-profile summer acquisition Xaver Schlager might hope for his chance in the Leipzig starting XI, RB head-coach Domenico Tedesco strongly insinuated that it would not be this weekend.

Tedesco surprised somewhat by listing players like Benjamin Henrichs and Dominik Szoboszlai as potential candidates to play in the double-six set-up.
Domenico Tedesco.
Domenico Tedesco.
At virtually any other club, a reported €12 million acquisition would definitely be earmarked for the starting XI right away. Such is typically not the case at at evolving €500 million super-club such as RB Leipzig, however. Whereas RB head-coach Domenico Tedesco has revealed that Timo Werner might start right away this weekend against 1. FC Köln, former Wolfsburg midfielder Xaver Schlager will have to wait his turn.

"Benny [Benjamin Henrichs] hasn't done so badly at the six position now," Tedesco remarked when asked about Schlage's prospects at a Thursday presser, "then we still have [Kevin] Kampl  Laimer. Even Szobo [Dominik Szoboszlai] has shown after his substitution that he can also play the position with his dynamism."

"Then there's Amadou Haidara," Tedesco continued, "You're not even asking about him. It's an ultra competitive position. If you have six players competing, then more speaks for the player who plays."

Schlager himself hasn't logged a single minute of competitive action for his new club yet. The Austrian would have surely fancied his chances of cracking the starting XI when it was rumored that his fellow countryman Laimer was off to Bayern over the summer. Now that this deal appears to off, the 24-year-old is stuck in a holding pattern.

"Xaver is pushing himself in training," Tedesco remarked, "There are still a few players ahead of him. That's simply the situation. It's not so easy to get in the starting XI for us."

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