Real Madrid vs RB Leipzig. Prediction and Preview. Probable Lineups, Team News, Stats, and more

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Do Marco Rosé and Co. stand a chance in Madrid?

Real Madrid CF will host RB Leipzig in the UEFA Champions League round of 16 match at the Santiago Bernabéu Stadium. The fixture will take place on Thursday, March 7, beginning at 01:30 IST.

Parimatch News will tell you everything you need to know ahead of the upcoming match.

Real Madrid News & Current Form: 

The Whites made it to the Champions League playoffs thanks to a solid first-place finish in the group stage of the tournament in Quartet C. Only the Royal Club and Manchester City have managed to get through the group without a single loss of points this season and they put 18 points in their piggy bank after 6 rounds played. 

But still Madrid were lucky with their opponents in the group, including SSC Napoli, who are having difficulties this season and SC Braga and FC Union Berlin, who are also approaching the season not in the best conditions. In these 6 matches Madrid managed to score 16 goals, and they conceded 7 goals, leaving the second Italian club in the group with an 8-point gap.

At the end of 2023, the Royal Club played their last 2 matches of the group, in which they first beat Napoli in a crazy shootout (4:2). The Neapolitans scored first already on 9 minutes of the match, but the Madrid team got back in the score after 2 minutes, and by 22 already led in the score (2:1) and the first half ended in their favor. 

At the beginning of the second half, the Italians equalized the score, to which the Spaniards were able to respond in the end of the game with two accurate strikes that decided the outcome of the game.

And in the final round of the group managed to win a difficult victory away against Union Berlin (3:2). At the end of the first half Madrid failed to score from the penalty spot, which was answered by the opponent’s goal a minute later. They managed to win back on 61 minutes, and on 72 minutes and even take the lead after a double from Joselu. The Germans did not give up and restored the status quo, but the Spaniards snatched victory again at the end of the game, this time it was Dani Ceballos who scored.

In the first game at Leipzig’s Red Bull Arena, Real Madrid had a tough time (a 0:1 victory). It was a match of crazy intensity, but, as it often happens, despite the pressure from the stands and the opponent, the cream eventually took the upper hand thanks to a goal from Brahim Diaz

By the way, replacing Courtois, goalkeeper Lunin made 9 saves in the match – a record for a goalkeeper of the capital’s grandee. In general, in 7 previous meetings of the current Champions League (including the group stage), the hosts have always won. 

Moreover, now Madrid are in great shape and do not know defeat in 9 matches in all competitions: in the La Liga, the royal club is now confidently leading and has 66 points in its assets after 27 rounds played. On 7 points less at the second Girona FC, which at the same time has 1 game in reserve. And 9 points less at FC Barcelona, which in the next round has a chance to reduce the gap to 6 points. 

In the last round of the last round of the Primera the Madrid team made peace with Valencia CF (2:2). Madrid had a sloppy start to the game and by 30 minutes were losing in the score (0:2), but they still managed to score 1 goal by the end of the first half. They managed to play the second half a little better, for which they were rewarded with a goal and got away from defeat. The author of the double in this meeting for the Capital team was Vinicius Jr.

On Thursday, Madrid will try to avoid a second elimination from the Champions League playoffs in the last 21 times in which they won the first match, the only such fiasco happened against AFC Ajax in the 2018-19 campaign. There is no doubt that the Germans will also try to cause problems for the 14-time European champions in the return match, but they will have to play to their limits.

Judging by the results, Real should have no problems at the current stretch of the season, but the psychological situation in the team is in question. First there was a misunderstanding between head coach Carlo Ancelotti and goalkeeper Kepa Arrizabalaga

The dispute turned into a conflict, which became the property of journalists. Then the nerves of the team leader Jude Bellingham gave way. In the last match against Valencia (2:2), the Englishman was so unhappy with the referee’s decision that he said too much and was suspended.

For Ancelotti, this is a worrying signal, because the crucial part of the season is ahead, and the Whites are traditionally expected not only to win the Primera, but also to succeed in the Champions League. It is very likely that the experienced Italian specialist will cope with the situation. 

Thanks to the coach’s ability to quickly adapt the scheme to the available players, Madrid almost painlessly endured the parting of Karim Benzema. The coach managed to organically combine Vinicius Jr. and Bellingham on the field, who quickly found mutual understanding and have already scored many important goals.

Goalkeeper of Real Madrid Andriy Lunin earned trust of coach Ancelotti

There are some issues with the defense of the Blancos, but it is enough to remember that the Spaniards spent most of the season without leading central defender Militao and main goalkeeper Thibaut Courtois. By the way, the latter was well replaced by Andriy Lunin. Coach Ancelotti highly appreciates the Ukrainian goalkeeper and recently promised him a new contract.

Courtois, who started training with the main squad, will get the go-ahead from the medical staff to appear on the pitch only in April and will definitely not play against Leipzig, as well as David Alaba and Eder Militao. Antonio Rüdiger returned to action last weekend and La Liga’s top scorer Bellingham (16 goals) is ready to lead Madrid’s attack once again. 

RB Leipzig News & Current Form: 

At the group stage of the Champions League, the German team took the 2nd place in the quartet G, due to which they made it to the playoffs of the tournament. In 6 matches they celebrated 4 victories and with 12 points they are confidently in second place, ahead of third-placed BSC Young Boys by 8 points. In the group they lost only twice to Manchester City, who had 6 victories in this quartet. The Germans managed to finish the group stage with a plus goal difference, where they sent 13 goals into the gates of their opponents and got 10 into their own.

In the last 3 rounds of the UCL group stage they have 2 wins to their credit. First they managed to beat FK Crvena Zvezda away (2:1), where they controlled the game and confidently brought it to a logical result, conceding a goal only in the end.

Next came an upset defeat away to Manchester City (2:3). The Germans in this game unexpectedly led in the score (2:0) already by 33 minutes of the match, thanks to a double by Lois Openda and ended the first half with the same score. But in the 2nd half the English woke up and turned the match upside down and in the end snatched the victory on character.

And in the final round the group managed to take home over Swiss Young Boys (2:1). The victory was not easy and the guests had several chances to level the score, but fortune was on the side of the Germans on this day.

In the first match of the Champions League playoffs, Leipzig faced the cold realism of Real and lost at home with a minimal advantage (0:1). It is important to note that the Germans have not won any of their last six matches in the Champions League playoffs since the 2019-20 season. 

The Bulls failed to take advantage of the home stands, as a consequence of which they signed their death warrant. The only thing that can save the Red Bulls is a quick goal and ten players in defense, and then it is already extra time and a series of penalties. It is worth noting that Leipzig’s defense leaves much to be desired. They missed 31 goals in 24 rounds of the current season of the German elite.

At the moment the team is going through a transitional period. In the summer, several top performers left the club, for whose transfers the team received solid payments. Now head coach Marco Rosé is building a new version of the team, distributing the crucial roles between Openda, Dani Olmo and Xavi Simons.

For this reason, Leipzig are unstable, have no title aspirations and are only fighting with Borussia Dortmund for fourth place in the Bundesliga standings, which gives them the opportunity to participate in the Champions League next season. The distance between the rivals is minimal, so it is difficult to predict the outcome.

Before the trip to the Santiago Bernabeu, the guests first lost 2:1 to crisis FC Bayern Minich, and in the last played 24th round of the German championship RB Leipzig defeated the 15th team of the championship VfL Bochum (4:1). 

Lois Openda – top scorer of RB Leipzig with 21 goals to his name

The team from Leipzig conceded first on 7 minutes of the match, but by 30 minutes they managed to get back and the first half ended in a draw. But in the 2nd half, the guests came together and gave a powerful segment in the middle of it, where they scored three times and confidently brought the match to the end.

The Bulls are still missing central defender Lukas Klostermann (injured in the match against Borussia Monchengladbach), and Frenchman Mohamed Simakan is disqualified for having too many yellow cards. 

Real Madrid form guide: D-W-W-D-W-D

RB Leipzig form guide: W-D-L-W-L-W

Real Madrid vs RB Leipzig Head-To-Head Record:

Real MadridDrawRB Leipzig
  • September 14, 2022: Real Madrid 2 – 0 RB Leipzig (UEFA Champions League);
  • October 25, 2022: RB Leipzig 3 – 2 Real Madrid (UEFA Champions League);
  • February 13, 2024: RB Leipzig 0 – 1 Real Madrid (UEFA Champions League).

Real Madrid vs RB Leipzig Predicted XI:

Real Madrid’s possible starting lineup (4-3-1-2): Lunin; Carvajal, Tchouameni, Rudiger, Mendy; Valverde, Camavinga, Kroos; Bellingham; Rodrygo, Vinicius Jr.

RB Leipzig’s possible starting lineup (4-2-2-2): Gulacsi; Henrichs, Orban, Lukeba, Raum; Olmo, Haidara, Schlager, Simons; Openda, Sesko.

Statistical preview of the match Real Madrid vs RB Leipzig:

  • Real Madrid’s First XI average age is 27.3 years, Leipzig’s First XI average age is 26.4 years.
  • The total value of Real Madrid’s squad is 1.04 bln euros, while the total of comes up to 483 mln euros.
  • Davide Massa has been appointed as the center referee. The referee has already served 18 games this season, showing an average of 5 Yellow Cards and also whistles 24 fouls per game. 
  • In 13 out of 16 home matches of the 2023/24 season (81.2%) Real Madrid won on corners. 
  • In six out of seven matches of Leipzig in the current draw of the Champions League an exchange of goals was recorded. 
  • Leipzig have scored a goal in 29 of 34 (85.2%) matches in the 2023/24 season. 
  • Real Madrid’s average xG (expected goals) is 1.98 and Leipzig’s is 1.78.
  • Real Madrid’s average possession percentage is 59.13%, while Leipzig’s is 54.09%.
  • Carlo Ancelotti makes an average of 4.21 substitutions per game, while Marco Rosé makes 4.76.
  • The Blancos earn an average of 0.18 penalties per game, while Leipzig earn 0.21.
  • Real Madrid have an average of 6.32 shots on goal, while Leipzig have 6.24.  
  • Two of Real Madrid’s last three matches have been draws.
  • Real Madrid are serving an average of 6.26 corners in the 2023/24 season, while Leipzig are serving an average of 5.82.
  • Real Madrid receive an average of 1.79 yellow cards in the 2023/24 season, while Leipzig receive an average of 1.91. 

What has been said before the match:

Gaffer of the Spanish side Carlo Ancelotti about analyzing what can be improved in the 2nd leg:

“It’s a big opportunity to progress in a competition that’s very special for us. We’ll “have to be at our best. The tie is not over, even if we do have a small advantage. We have to be at our best from the first minute to the last.”

“The first leg was difficult against Leipzig, even though we created a lot of chances. We have to improve on that and be more dangerous because it’s going to be a different game tomorrow. They will look to play more in transition than us. Dealing with that defensively is going to be very important”.

“We’ve looked at the first leg, the things we did well and the things we can improve on. Defensively we struggled and that’s where we need to improve. Leipzig are a dangerous team in transitions. They have very fast forwards. Rüdiger is back and will help us in this regard. We have to put in a complete performance because that will give us the chance to win this tie.”

“You can never be calm in a game where there’s a lot at stake in this season. We have to chase the dream of staying in this competition, which has given us a lot of success in the past. I don’t think about the referee before the game and I wouldn’t like to be thinking about him after the game either.”

“I would say that we’ve done very well this season, to talk about it today. We want to carry on like this. We’ve still got two or three months to go. When we finish we will make an evaluation of the season, but I can’t criticize my team for anything so far.”

Real Madrid vs RB Leipzig Prediction:

In the first match of 1/8 Real Madrid had to handle the representative of the Bundesliga without their key player, Bellingham, and the main center-back Rüdiger. Now they are back in the line-up, and this fact makes the Bulls’ chances of a comeback even more slim. Madrid will not be protecting and holding on to the result of the first leg, it is very difficult to imagine or remember situations for Los Blancos to play second fiddle in their arena. At the Santiago Bernabeu, Los Blancos are going undefeated this season: 14 victories and 2 draws. The Spanish club have won 9 of their last 10 UCL matches on home soil, only Manchester City, to whom Leipzig lost both games in the last group stage, have not been beaten in that stretch. In addition, Carlo Ancelotti’s men were victorious in a head-to-head clash against the Bulls in Madrid in the 2022/23 season (2:0). The Royal Club are averaging 2.43 goals per game in this UEFA Champions League campaign, and in five of the seven matches, Bellingham and partners have differentiated at least twice. Plus, we see an almost identical figure in the home matches of the season (in all competitions) – 2.44 goals per match. The Bulls concede an average of 1.57 goals per game in the UCL. 

The Germans, on the other hand, have had a bad run of away games recently: six defeats, two draws and three wins in their last 11 games on the opposing side’s territory. Moreover, two of the victories were obtained in matches against a rather modest counterforce: Red Star and Bochum. Marco Rosé’s men will not be in a hurry to gallop into the gates of Real Madrid, but sooner or later they will have to go forward, and Loïs Openda and his teammates know how to do their work in the final third, they will have their chances. In this UCL campaign, the Germans failed to score only once – exactly in the match against Los Blancos. Yet, in that very match, Andrei Lunin became the second goalkeeper in Real Madrid’s history to make 9 saves in the Champions League without conceding. It will be extremely difficult to repeat such an achievement. We expect an action-packed game, where Real Madrid will be able to sublimate the energy and competitive anger from the last La Liga match in order to progress further in the tournament. 

Parimatch News staff prediction:

We say: Real Madrid will win and both teams will score – Yes.