Laurenz Dehl scored the only goal of the game as 1. FC Union Berlin continued their unbeaten start to the U19 Bundesliga campaign with a 1-0 win over RB Leipzig.
Title favourites Leipzig were pinned back from the start at the FEZ-Berlin complex as Union Berlin took control and played aggressively and with bravery. Dehl and Tim Maciejewski passed up early opportunities but after 13 minutes, the captain dribbled in from the left wing and fired into the top corner. Union remained on top, creating the best chances but unable to add to the one-goal advantage before half time.
A positive period after the break followed for Union, but Andre Vilk's team would be faced with a set back five minutes in. Leipzig broke clear of the home side and Lukas Veith took down his man who was going clean through and he received a straight red card.
Down a player, this didn't hold Union back. There was more defensive organisation and challenges, but also opportunities in attack. Leo Oppermann, who played in the Baltic Sea Cup against Halmstads, was more active in the final 20 minutes as Union dropped a little deeper without the ball. Dehl was fouled in the penalty box in the last seconds but the referee blew instead for the final whistle.
"We definitely deserved to win today," said U19 head coach Andre Vilk. "We were not inferior to our opponents in any aspect and Leipzig had also no clear cut chances. The first half was very good from our team, although like in the last games we could have got more with better finishing. The red card shortly after the restart changed the game completely, of course, then our focus was on defensive work. But also our defenders and Leo Oppermann in goal have done absolutely great work in spite of the midweek game in the Baltic Sea Cup. So we're not only satisfied with the result, but also with the performance throughout the match."
XI: Oppermann; Labroussis, Rankic, Liebelt, Riecke; Veith, Gencel (Somnitz 72), Dehl, Maciejewski (Czosnyka 76), Aksakal (Koch 55); Asllani (Ihbe 84)
Next up for Union is an away match at Dynamo Dresden on Saturday September 28 at 13:00.
Before, on Wednesday coming, Union take on VSG Altglienicke in the U19 Berlin Pokal.