Taiwo Awoniyi’s ninth Bundesliga goal of the season helped take Union Berlin into the top four, overnight at least, with victory over RB Leipzig.
Union Berlin 2-1 RB Leipzig
Goals: 1-0 Awoniyi 6’ (assist: Baumgartl), 1-1 Nkunku 13’, 2-1 Baumgartl 57’
The tone was set early on for a bumper Matchday 14 when Awoniyi struck after only six minutes. Timo Baumgartl headed down Julian Ryerson’s cross following a short corner, and the Nigerian reacted quickest to turn in at the far post. Union really should’ve been 2-0 up minutes later but Awoniyi missed a low ball into the centre and Max Kruse put the second attempt wide while unchallenged. The Berliners were made to pay as Leipzig responded with their first effort on goal only seconds afterwards. Nkunku’s shot from 25 yards bounced just in front of Andreas Luthe – wearing purple gloves to support International Disability Day – but he failed to get either one to it and the ball went in over the diving goalkeeper. Dominik Szoboszlai had a dipping effort tipped over the bar while Kruse pulled the strings at the other end, but without any more clear-cut chances. Andre Silva headed over his best chance before the half-time whistle sounded at the Alte Försterei.
Awoniyi now has 14 goals in 23 appearances in all competition this season.
— Bundesliga English (@Bundesliga_EN) December 3, 2021
The second half didn’t have the blistering start of the first, but Union did again make their first good chance count. Baumgartl was again up for a corner and reacted quickest after Kruse’s effort from the edge of the box following the cutback was deflected and wrong-footed Peter Gulacsi, allowing for the tap-in. Silva failed to hit the target in search of a response, dragging wide from 18 yards in the falling Berlin snow. Szoboszlai had a goal-bound effort blocked before substitute Genki Haraguchi missed out on making the final 10 minutes far more comfortable when he poked wide. Kevin Behrens was then denied from point-blank range by the leg of Peter Gulacsi, who reacted well again from the ensuing corner to tip a deflected effort around the post. Victory for Union puts a five-point cushion between themselves and their eastern rivals, who are seven points down on their previous lowest total after 14 Bundesliga matchdays.