Champions League

Sabitzer stars as Leipzig fight back to down Zenit

2019-10-23 21:15
UEFA Champions League (Getty Images)
UEFA Champions League (Getty Images)

Leipzig  - Austria's Marcel Sabitzer set up a goal and scored a spectacular winner as RB Leipzig came from behind to beat Zenit St Petersburg 2-1 in the Champions League to move top of Group G on Wednesday.

Sabitzer's second-half heroics came after Yaroslav Rakitskyy opened the scoring for the Russians who had only lost once since August in all competitions before the trip to Germany.

"To score my first Champions League goal in this moment, in this game and then for it to be a goal like that -- it's an incredible moment for me," Sabitzer said.

"I'm so happy I was able to help the team with my goal. The three points count more than my goal."

Leipzig sit on six points, two clear of Zenit and Lyon in third while Benfica are bottom without a point before the French side travel to the Portugese champions later in the day.

Leipzig coach Julian Nagelsmann made four changes from the weekend's Bundesliga draw with Wolfsburg as experienced midfielder Kevin Kampl made his first start since late August after recovering from an ankle injury and striker Yussuf Poulsen dropped to the bench.

Sergei Semak kept the same starting lineup from Saturday's 6-1 thumping of Rostov as Artem Dzyuba, who scored a hat-trick in the weekend's fixture, joining Sebastian Driussi and Iran's Sardar Azmoun up-front.

The home side made a positive start and midfielder Konrad Laimer made Zenit goalkeeper Mikhail Kerzhakov work after just 70 seconds.

Kerzhakov tipped Laimer's long-range powerful shot onto the bar and out for a corner.

The visitors were in the lead after 25 minutes of play when centre-back Rakitskyy scored his first Champions League goal since 2011.

Ukraine international Rakitskyy picked up the ball 30 metres from goal. His sweetly struck half-volley left Peter Gulacsi without a chance of stopping the effort.

Nagelsmann's first tactical move was to take Germany forward Timo Werner off for Brazilian youngster Natheu Cunha at the break to make his first Champions League appearance.

Despite Nagelsmann's decision to replace Werner, who has eight goals in 11 matches this season, Laimer brought Leipzig level four minutes into the second half.

Former Everton winger Ademola Lookman found Sabitzer on the right-hand side.

The Austrian international then set-up his fellow countryman Laimer for his first goal of the season.

Nagelsmann's outfit then took the lead with half an hour to play.

Sabitzer turned scorer as his curling half-volley from inside the edge of the box lobbed over Kerzhakov and Naglesmann's men held on for their first victory in four games in all competitions.

The two sides meet again on November 5 in St. Petersburg.

 

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Fixtures
Tuesday, 26 November 2019
Lokomotiv Moscow v Bayer Leverkusen, Lokomotiv Stadium 19:55
Galatasaray v Club Brugge, Turk Telekom Arena 19:55
Juventus v Atletico Madrid, Allianz Stadium 22:00
Atalanta v Dinamo Zagreb, Atleti Azzurri d'Italia 22:00
Manchester City v Shakhtar Donetsk, Etihad Stadium 22:00
Real Madrid v Paris SG, Santiago Bernabeu 22:00
Red Star Belgrade v Bayern Munchen, Stadion Rajko Mitic 22:00
Tottenham Hotspur v Olympiacos, Tottenham Hotspur Stadium 22:00
Wednesday, 27 November 2019
Valencia v Chelsea, Mestalla 19:55
Zenit St. Petersburg v Lyon, Saint Petersburg Stadium 19:55
Liverpool v Napoli, Anfield 22:00
Barcelona v Borussia Dortmund, Camp Nou 22:00
Slavia Prague v Inter Milan, Eden Arena 22:00
Genk v Red Bull Salzburg, Luminus Arena 22:00
RB Leipzig v Benfica, Red Bull Arena 22:00
Lille v Ajax, Stade Pierre-Mauroy 22:00
Tuesday, 10 December 2019
Red Bull Salzburg v Liverpool, Red Bull Arena 19:55
Napoli v Genk, San Paolo 19:55
Ajax v Valencia, Amsterdam ArenA 22:00
Benfica v Zenit St. Petersburg, da Luz 22:00
Lyon v RB Leipzig, Groupama Stadium 22:00
Inter Milan v Barcelona, San Siro 22:00
Borussia Dortmund v Slavia Prague, Signal Iduna Park 22:00
Chelsea v Lille, Stamford Bridge 22:00
Wednesday, 11 December 2019
Dinamo Zagreb v Manchester City, Maksimir Stadium 19:55
Shakhtar Donetsk v Atalanta, Metalist Stadium 19:55
Bayern Munchen v Tottenham Hotspur, Allianz Arena 22:00
Bayer Leverkusen v Juventus, BayArena 22:00
Club Brugge v Real Madrid, Jan Breydel Stadion 22:00
Olympiacos v Red Star Belgrade, Karaiskakis Stadium 22:00
Paris SG v Galatasaray, Parc des Princes 22:00
Atletico Madrid v Lokomotiv Moscow, Wanda Metropolitano 22:00
Saturday, 30 May 2020
TBA v TBA, Ataturk Olympic Stadium 02:00
Logs
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