AS Monaco played their part in a bit of Champions League history earlier this evening, becoming RB Leipzig’s first ever opponents in Europe’s premier club competition.
Leipzig were effectively founded back in 2009 and 3039 days later, made their European bow. A crowd of over 40,000 was present at the Red Bull Arena for the club’s first ever European night, and Monaco, still smarting from a 4-0 loss away at Nice over the weekend, were the visitors.
Leipzig’s line up unfortunately did not involve Naby Keita- the soon to be Liverpool star who played such a vital role in getting them to the competition last season, but had to sit this one owing to injury. His replacement tried as best, but as Leipzig’s coach said after the game, wasn’t simply Keita.
Timo Werner is expected to follow Keita out of Leipzig, according to the Football Transfer Rumours website, and it was his team-mate Emil Forsberg, another who wanted out this summer, who put his name in Leipzig’s history by scoring their first ever goal, just five minutes after medio Diego Damme had collected the club’s first ever yellow card.
However two minutes later, Youri Tielemans equalised for ASM, and that was to be that, with no further goals. Leipzig were cautious but happy to get a point on their CL debut. As per the stats folks at On Footy, this was also the first time since the 2011/12 season that only one German club had won in the opening round of CL fixtures, with Dortmund going down to Spurs at Wembley.
On the face of it, this looks like a competitive group, with Besiktas the unlikely leaders after MD1 following their surprise win away at Porto.