Jonas Hofmann and Ramy Bensebaini were the standout performers as Borussia Monchengladbach sealed an important 1-0 over former league leaders RB Leipzig.
It was a cagey start to the game as both sides tried to remain cautious and avoid conceding an early goal that could have gravely impacted their game-plan. Gladbach had a lot of possession and were taking more risks, though the game was controlled by Leipzig, who appeared more efficient on the ball and created a few opportunities.
The game opened up after half-time, with Gladbach, in particular, showing a lot of intent going forward, even though it was Leipzig who dominated possession. The Foals eventually got their breakthrough in the 60th minute through Hannes Wolf, who is ironically a player on loan from RB Leipzig.
— Bundesliga English (@Bundesliga_EN) October 31, 2020
The goal gave the home side the incentive to sit deep, though they did still look to find another with coach Marco Rose bringing on more firepower during the late stages of the game. The Foals’ defence does deserve a lot of credit for fending off the Leipzig attack, though and bag a crucial victory.
Here, at The Hard Tackle, we will run the rule over the two sides in this fascinating match between two of the most interesting teams in the Bundesliga.
Yann Sommer: 8/10
Made a host of excellent saves to preserve his clean sheet and keep his side in the game.
Stefan Lainer: 7/10
Had a clumsy start to the game but settled in well as the match progressed. A solid outlet at right-back.
Matthias Ginter: 7.5/10
Matthias Ginter, who has been linked to Chelsea of late, also had a rusty start to the game but responded well despite losing his partner at half-time. A rock at the back.
Nico Elvedi: 7/10
Nico Elvedi had a quiet start to the game but was called into action multiple times as the likes of Yussuf Poulsen and Alexander Sorloth poured forward. Was replaced at half-time, though it remains unclear whether it was an injury or a tactical substitution.
Ramy Bensebaini: 8/10
Bensebaini had to play at centre-back after Elvedi’s substitution. Solid throughout the night and the defender particularly gelled well with Ginter in central defence.
— Ishaq Chebli (@IshaqChebli) October 31, 2020
Jonas Hofmann: 8.5/10
A vital cog in the Gladbach midfield, who created a host of turnovers and looked composed as ever while doing so. One of the best performers of the night.
Florian Neuhaus: 7.5/10
Offered some much-needed support to Hofmann in the middle of the park. Played a key role in the build-up phase as well before making way for Christoph Kramer.
Patrick Herrmann: 7/10
Patrick Herrmann was anonymous for the most part of the game, but the German was intelligent to lay the ball off to Hannes Wolf, thus providing the assist for the only goal of the game.
Breel Embolo: 6.5/10
Lots of flicks and tricks by Breel Embolo, who operated in the number ten role. The Swiss attacker tried to squeeze through tight spaces with his quick feet but primarily provided short forward passes during Gladbach’s attacking phases.
Hannes Wolf: 7.5/10
On loan from RB Leipzig, Hannes Wolf always looked to make an impression. He was hungry to get on to the ball and eventually found a breakthrough in the second half with an amazing finish.
Alassane Plea: 8/10
Alassane Plea didn’t look too sharp in the first half. But an improved second-half display saw him provide the elegant pass to Patrick Herrmann, with the move eventually leading to the goal. The Frenchman also initiated a couple of sharp counterattacks before making way for Lars Stindl.
🗣️ 'Did you get the assist?'
— Gladbach (@borussia_en) October 27, 2020
Oscar Wendt 7/10
Brought his experience to the table after replacing Elvedi at half-time. Made a rash foul but continued to be solid.
Marcus Thuram 6/10
Offered some late dynamism to the Gladbach attack though it didn’t result in further goals for the Foals.
Christoph Kramer 6/10
Christoph Kramer provided further assurance in midfield during the final phase of the game.
Lars Stindl N/A
Provided more energy to the table, especially in the first line of press.
Valentino Lazaro N/A
A late replacement for the tiring Herrmann.
Peter Gulacsi: 6/10
Had nothing to do for the most part of the game, but failed to rescue Leipzig when they needed saving as he couldn’t keep out Wolf’s calculated finish.
Benjamin Henrichs: 5/10
Too passive in dealing with Plea, who managed to cross the ball into the box, leading to Gladbach’s opener.
Willi Orban: 7/10
Cut off Plea in the second half in what could have been an excellent opportunity. Remained solid for the most part.
Dayot Upamecano: 6/10
Upamecano was a rock at the back for Leipzig for the most part. But, he once carelessly lost the ball early in the second half and it could have led to a goal had it not been for Orban.
Angelino was solid in dealing with the threat of Herrmann on the opposite flank. Had a more attacking role in the second half but couldn’t provide the X-factor.
Marcel Sabitzer: 6.5/10
A key cog in the second line of press for Leipzig, Sabitzer once came close to scoring but his effort was saved by Sommer.
Leipzig with a 4132 4231 w Sabitzer in the customary Konnie Laimer "DM+RW" role, looking to overload the right side w the movements of Olmo+Sorloth
Gladbach in a standard 4231 w Embolo dropping back at times, wide forwards coming inside#BMGRBL pic.twitter.com/3cANd83loh
— Abel Meszaros (@BundesPL) October 31, 2020
Kevin Kampl: 6.5/10
An absolute workhorse in the middle of the park, Kevin Kampl, unfortunately, had to leave the field after Gladbach’s goal in order to make way for more attackers.
Dani Olmo: 6/10
Dani Olmo had a few bright moments in the game but was largely uninfluential as far as breaching the Gladbach defence was concerned.
Yussuf Poulsen: 7.5/10
Yussuf Poulsen was very active throughout the course of the game. His work-rate, stamina and physical frame made it difficult for Gladbach defenders, though the Dane should have put away in what was the best chance of the game, in the first half.
Lazar Samardzic: 6/10
Failed to make an impression in what was his starting debut for RB Leipzig. Replaced in the second half.
Alexander Sorloth: 7.5/10
Made a good impression after a slow start to the campaign. He was lively and showed good pace, though unlucky not to find the goal.
Sørloth is good but he's gotta start getting goals. Like I can see the hype but come on man
— Dre (@TheDreMos) October 31, 2020
Hwang Hee-chan: 6.5/10
Made a few solid runs to unsettle the Gladbach defence. He was keen on making an impression after falling behind the likes of Olmo, Nkunku and Forsberg in the pecking order, but to no avail.
Emil Forsberg: 7/10
Made a huge impact coming on for Olmo as Leipzig looked much more lively going forward. Failed to create that final product though.
Amadou Haidara: 6.5/10
A brilliant long-range effort needed some saving from Sommer.
Christopher Nkunku: 6.5/10
Tried to provide the creative essence in the final third, but it wasn’t enough to unsettle the Gladbach defence.