They may have only met six times previously in the Bundesliga but the rivalry between Bayern Munich and RB Leipzig is one that intensifies with each new duel.
In one corner stand Bayern, the dominant force of German football with a record 29 league titles to their names and also a traditional heavyweight on the European stage.
A clash that keeps getting tastier – RB Leipzig v Bayern Munich: TOP 5 GOALS
Then, in the opposite corner, is the rising force that is RB Leipzig, who were playing in the fourth tier just seven years ago but are now regarded as one of the Bundesliga’s strongest teams after a couple of top-three finishes since winning promotion in 2016.
The form guide suggests that seasoned campaigners are head and shoulders ahead of the upstarts, having won six of their previous eight meetings in all competition which include two DFB-Pokal ties and losing just once.
But, while it was Borussia Dortmund who pushed the reigning champions all the way to the final day of the season last term, Leipzig are also being tipped as contenders for the title in 2019/20 – a sure sign of just how far they have come.
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Die Roten Bullen may not boast as many headline acts as Bayern do in the likes of Robert Lewandowski, Thiago and Manuel Neuer, but they have a genuine star man in Timo Werner backed by an extremely capable support cast of Marcel Sabitzer, Yussuf Poulsen and Marcel Halstenberg to name but a few.
Even on the international stage, it is becoming difficult to ignore Leipzig as they had three players – Werner, Halstenberg and Lukas Klostermann called up to the most recent Germany squad – a figure only better by Bayern’s five.
— RB Leipzig English (@RBLeipzig_EN) September 12, 2019
The growing ambition emanating from the Red Bull Arena has also been highlighted by the summer arrival of Julian Nagelsmann, one of Europe’s most highly-rated young managers who joined from Hoffenheim with a growing reputation.
Both teams meet once again in Leipzig on Saturday and, despite their poor head-to-head record thus far, there is a feeling that the upcoming match will be the most evenly-contested affair between the two teams yet.
And, if Leipzig are just able to continue being the only side left in the Bundesliga with a perfect start to the season by claiming a fourth consecutive win, while also inflicting a first defeat on Bayern, then they will surely have to be regarded as legitimate challengers for the Meisterschale.