Last season saw 5,000-1 outsiders Leicester City win the Premier League for the first time in their history with those fans brave enough to place their football bets on the Foxes truly bashing the bookies. With 11 games gone in the Bundesliga, RB Leipzig lead the table by three points from Bayern Munich – can history repeat itself?
RB Leipzig history
RB Leipzig’s story is an interesting one. Founded seven years ago when Red Bull bought the playing rights of fifth-tier side SSV Markranstädt, having failed to take over at FC Sachsen Leipzig. Contrary to popular belief, the RB at the start of Leipzig’s name doesn’t stand for Red Bull either; strict rules against corporate influence in German football meant that Red Bull were forced to name their team RasenBallsport Leipzig – literally “Lawn Ball Sports”.
After finishing second in last year’s 2.Bundesliga, RB Leipzig started their debut season in the top flight with a bang. By Gameweek 11 Der Bullen had achieved the unthinkable in unseating Bayern Munich from the top spot for the first time in a year. To do this, they set a German record for the longest unbeaten sequence from the start of the season in the top flight, remaining unbeaten in 11 games.
Why are RB Leipzig winning football bets?
A large part of their success has to be down to a policy of recruiting young, promising talent. Oliver Burke raised many eyebrows moving to Leipzig from Nottingham Forest in the English Championship but the teenage winger has settled in well, making nine appearances since signing on deadline day and scoring once. He’s been joined by 20-year old Timo Werner (5 goals in 11 appearances), and 21-year old Naby Keita (3 in 9), creating a team which has scored in every single game they have played in the league this year – a feat only matched by Real Madrid in Europe’s top leagues.
Unfortunately, it’s difficult to compare them with the Leicester fairy tale. Germany has a strong history of fan ownership in football, with a specific rule that clubs must have a minimum “50% + 1” of the club owned by fans. This means that a club like Borussia Dortmund has 139,000 paying members who have a veto over issues like ticket prices. At RB Leipzig however, where non-voting membership is a massive €1,000 a year, only 17 people have voting rights – and the majority of them are employees or associates of Red Bull.
This has made them somewhat disliked in Germany. Against Union Berlin in 2014 they were met by spectators in plastic black ponchos and a 15 minute silence after kick off. In the first round of the DFB Pokal this season, Dynamo Dresden fans threw a severed bulls head on the side of the pitch while their first ever top flight game was met by Hoffenheim fans holding placards demanding their throne back as the most hated team in Germany.
RB Leipzig free tips
RB Leipzig fans don’t care. They’re top of the league, confounding the critics and hopeful of ending Bayern’s stranglehold as Champions. They face 10th placed Freiburg this weekend, favourites to extend their unbeaten run. Do you think that RB Leipzig can continue their story? Or is karma going to come and get them? Post your tips at ProTipster and let us know!