RB Leipzig wins DFB Pokal, claims first trophy in 13-year history

Nine-man Leipzig survive scare to win on penalties

RB Leipzig won the first trophy in the history of the club as they defeated SC Freiburg 4-2 on penalties in the final of the 2022 DFB Pokal.

Weeks after suffering a heartbreak at the hands of Rangers in the UEFA Europa League semifinal, RB Leipzig were on the hunt for a first trophy in their history against an impressive Freiburg side.

Freiburg brought the game to life as they took a shock lead in the 17th minute through Maximilan Eggestein, although there was a hint of a handball by Roland Sallai as he set up the midfielder to score, but the VAR ruled the goal as legitimate.

Leipzig managed to dig themselves further into the hole after defender Marcel Halstenberg was sent off in the 57th minute as he brought down Freiburg striker Lucas Holer with the striker clean through on goal following a quick counter.

With the game slipping away from RB Leipzig, their hero struck again to draw his side level in the 76th minute. Christopher Nkunku reacted quickly after Willi Orban headed a cross to him at the back post, prodding home the ball from a tight angle. It was the Bundesliga Player of the Year’s fourth goal in the DFB Pokal this season.

Nkunku’s goal sent the game into extra-time and Freiburg were unlucky not to score as they twice saw efforts come back off the woodwork with RB Leipzig goalkeeper Peter Gulacsi beaten.

Leipzig received another red card as substitute Kevin Kampl received a second yellow card on the substitutes’ bench for his protests following a VAR decision to not give his side a penalty in the 117th minute.

Freiburg captain Christian Gunter and striker Ermedin Demirovic were the only ones who missed in the penalty shootout, with Leipzig scoring all four kicks they took to emerge 4-2 winners.

Leipzig have now won their first-ever trophy since the creation of the club in 2009, denying Freiburg a first-ever trophy of their own.

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