"We need to be aggressive but humble!"

Julian Nagelsmann and Tyler Adams look ahead to the last-16 second leg against Liverpool | Team news: Marcel Sabitzer and Marcel Halstenberg available again, Angelino misses out with muscle problem

Finally Champions League again! RB Leipzig take on Liverpool in the second leg of their round-of-16 tie at the Puskás Aréna in Budapest, where Julian Nagelsmann's side will look to turn around a 2-0 deficit to reach the quarter-finals for the second year in a row. Kick-off is 21:00 CET on Wednesday evening.

Together with Tyler Adams, head coach Julian Nagelsmann spoke to the media and gave an upade on team news at the virtual press conference ahead of the upcoming Champions League tie.

Julian Nagelsmann on ...

... holding the Final training session in Leipzig:

By doing our final training in Leipzig, we can take the load off ourselves in Budapest and use the time more effectively to concentrate on the important game. The main reason behind the decision is that we already know the stadium now.

... Flexibility and the return of confidence in attack:

It's always good as a coach when you have several different options to set up your team. I'm extremely pleased that our attacking is getting better and better and that's also very helpful now, when we have to come back from a 2-0 deficit against Liverpool.

The quality of Yussuf Poulsen at the moment is exactly the same as it was three weeks ago. However, it's easier to play when you have confidence and Yussi radiates that on the pitch, as do Alex Sørloth and Hee-chan Hwang.

... THe situation ahead of the second leg:

My players know that many crazy things have already happened in football and that you can turn deficits around. We've already proven that. However, we also know that it will be an extremely difficult task to do that in the second leg against Liverpool. We're only focused on the upcoming Champions League match, and we lost the first leg 2-0.
Of course, it would be extraordinary and wonderful if we could get through. We had some great games in the Champions League last season and we will try to do the same on Wednesday. We have to approach the game with a mixture of attacking aggressiveness in attack and humility - that will be decisive. Of course, this won't be easy to implement and we can't afford to make similar mistakes to the first leg. We will give it our absolute all and bring our best to the pitch and, coupled with a fighting attitude, we want to put on a great performance.

... Liverpool's strengths:

Liverpool is an absolute world-class team with an absolute world-class coach who has already overcome several crises at the club. In their play, they are still creating good chances, but they're just lacking efficiency in the league at the moment.
There are moments when Liverpool defend with a high line, but there are also moments when they are deeper - depending on the situation and how the game is going. We know that Jürgen Klopp's team are currently dealing with injury problems, particularly in defence. It will be about controling the space behind the defensive line. The team that exploits and implements this better will also be more successful side. 

... The quality of Emil Forsberg and Christo Nkunku:

Emil Forsberg has a huge impact on the team with his wealth of experience, whether for club or country. With his quality in the final third, he can always decide games. Recently, he set up a goal against Gladbach and also scored himself against Freiburg with a great finish. He has trained well and always brings extra quality to the pitch because of his technique and the way he moves between the lines.
With Christopher Nkunku, it's all about getting his talent out. He had an outstanding first six months after his move to RB Leipzig, then things didn't go as well in the second half of the season. He has tremendous speed, brings a lot of flair and a good goal-scoring ability - and skills like that are always important to bring out on the pitch. The decisive factor is the efficiency of his undoubtedly strong actions. At the moment, he is building on the performances of his first six months in Leipzig. When he is in top condition and knows that he is playing for the result, he will be even better. I'd like to see him continue playing this way over the next few weeks.

... His passionate coaching style:

I would call myself an active coach. It's my job and I can't do it any less emotionally because I'm very passionate when I'm standing on the sideline. In my opinion, it also gives the coach a certain outlet for their energy. I also think that if I demand an absolute winning mentality from my players on the pitch, I also have to replicate and exemplify that on the sideline.

... Empty stands:

We all have to get used to the empty stands in the stadium, we have no other choice at the moment. But of course it's much nicer to play in front of fans and we miss our fans immensely. The many emotional moments, such as the last-minute comeback win against Borussia Mönchengladbach was something I would have much rather experienced in front of a sold-out ground full of our fans, simply because it makes the whole thing much more emotional and beautiful. We're really looking forward to the moment when fans are allowed back into the stadium, because that's what football is all about.

Tyler Adams on ...

... His development at RB Leipzig:

I've gotten more and more chances from the coach and tried to take them as often as I could and have as big an impact as possible on the team's performance. We have an enormous amount of quality in our squad, we could actually change the starting eleven completely every weekend.

... The upcoming game against Liverpool:

Even though the last results in the league were not exactly convincing for Liverpool, this does not make them vulnerable. You can't underestimate them at all. It's not easy to always be at the top and especially to stay there - not even for Liverpool.
We are still the underdogs, even though our performance in recent weeks has been good and we've built up a lot of confidence. It will be a tough task. Every single player will have to go to the limit if we ant to get through. We were able to create some good chances in the first leg, and we have to take advantage of them on Wednesday and score goals. 

+++ Team news +++

  • Defender Marcel Halstenberg and captain Marcel Sabitzer returned to team training this week and are available for Wednesday's game.
  • Angelino (muscle injury) is still training individually and will not be available.

  • The operation carried out on Willi Orban's hand went well. He has protective equipment that allows him to play. A decision will be made soon on whether he is available for the Liverpool game.


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