Sunday afternoon sees two of the fast starters in this season's Bundesliga go face to face in the Domstadt. Ali and Axel discussed both side's start to the season in the most recent BundesSpeaker podcast, which you can listen to here, and now they match up in one of the biggest clashes of the weekend. Here are our top reasons to watch what should be a great game.
1. Both sides are undefeated
After strong starts to the season both sides go into the 5th match without a defeat to their names, particularly impressive for the newly promoted side from Leipzig. FC Köln only conceded their first goal in their midweek victory over Schalke, the last side in the top 5 divisions across European football to do so, standing them in good stead to face the fresh-faced attack coming their way from Leipzig. Leipzig have conceded goals but have been scoring too, with a 1-0 home victory over Borussia Dortmund really marking them out as a side to watch this year. It should be a close game.
2. RB away days
Leipzig are the most hated team in German football and possibly the most roundly hated team in world football now that everyone has forgotten about the Netherlands at the 2010 World Cup. That means that whenever they go travelling around the country they will be faced with a hostile reception. In their first match, away at now only "much disliked" 1899 Hoffenheim, they were greeted with banners reading "We want our title of most hated team in Germany back". After an uncomfortable trip to Hamburg, which actually resulted in a comfortable win, they will be back in the jaws of the Traditionsverein and the atmosphere is bound to be intimidating. How their players deal with that over the course of the season will define their campaign.
3. Sunday Afternoon Fightclub
What else do you have to do on a Sunday? Because of the more relaxed nature of Sundays, you can easily join Peter Stöger in jeans and a t-shirt, on the sofa, enjoying a good game of football. On the other hand, Köln fans will probably still be drunk from Saturday night, the police will almost certainly still be on high alert from Saturday night and the fireworks could really fly. Let's hope it doesn't get nasty, especially as you can hardly blame the people of Leipzig for getting behind the only genuinely successful team from the old East, but there is always the risk of ugly scenes. Sunday afternoon never looked so exciting.
What's not to love about a real goat as the mascot? Granted, Anthony Ujah went too far a couple of seasons ago when he actually rode it, but for everyone else it is some harmless fun to see a (pretty intimidating) real goat on the touchline. I'd certainly be worried if I ran into him in a dark alley. I guess RB probably have fewer such concerns, given that their mascot is a huge, you guessed it, red bull, but still. A real goat vs. a man in a bull costume, I know who wins that battle. Maybe RB should bring a real bull to the ground to be their mascot.... *Makes note*
5. It's better than the NFL
OK personally I'd go double screen and watch both, but I know that a lot of people are less than thrilled at the prospect of fake football taking over their screens. The best way to stop it getting more popular is to avoid it, so I'd suggest sticking this game on and making it clear what your favourite sport is (and will remain). On the other hand if it turns out to be terrible you can turn from the goat to the Rams and see how the LA Rams do. If they're playing. I don't know, just stick to the Bundesliga....
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