Borussia Monchengladbach made it 10 games without a victory at home tonight as they suffered 3-1 loss against RB Leipzig, in a game where having a clinical frontman was the difference.
Gladbach could only dream of having a striker as clinical as Timo Werner, who had two chances all game, scoring them both.
RB Leipzig edge first half
Leipzig went into the dressing rooms at half time a goal to the good, with the safe knowledge that they could play a lot better in the second half.
Monchengladbach started the better team, with half chances landing to both Alassane Plea and Breel Embolo. Peter Gulasci only really had one save to make during the first half, palming away a shot from an unbalanced Plea to safety.
In the middle third of the half, the game lacked any real quality with neither team getting their foot on the ball, controlling the play.
Emil Forsberg was largely a spectator and Gladbach's youthful forward line shown their lack of experience as they wasted countless positive situations, choosing the wrong pass or attempting to take on one player too many
Quality prevailed in the 38th minute of the match. Forsberg, who was quiet until this moment, got on the ball after chaotic few seconds and slid a lovely through ball onto the onrushing Werner.
The German forward brushed aside Matthias Ginter far too easily and stroked the ball through the onrushing Yann Sommer's legs. Leipzig appeared to be the side with the most control of the general proceedings of the match in the first half.
There is no catching Turbo Timo
In the opening minutes of the half, Yussef Poulsen dropped the ball off to Timo Werner just inside his half. Werner took the ball on and strolled through Leipzig's defence as they looked like they were running through mud trying to catch the young German.
Running at full speed, Werner put the ball onto his weaker left foot and guided the ball past a helpless Sommer.
The following 10 minutes could have put an end to the contest. Werner squared a couple of balls to Poulsen but either his movement was not in sync with his strike partner or the ball was a little off.
Sommer also produced a showstopping save, as he clawed a shot from the impressive Marcel Sabitzer to safety.
A tired fightback
Gladbach gave it everything in the last 30 minutes of the contest, notably hitting the bar off an attempted clearance from Willi Orban. However, Gladbach looked tired and out of ideas for the most part.
The hosts were given hope via Embolo's shoulder. A quality set-piece was delivered from Laszio Benes and the Swiss international was there to fortuitously guide it into the bottom corner in the 90th minute.
There was time for more drama in Germany, as another whipped ball into the box deceived Gulasci and Embolo headed over from just a few yards out.
The cruelty of top-level football reared it's ugly head from Gladbach's perspective once again, as the resulting goal kick met Ginter's head, landing on Werner's foot. The finish was never in doubt as Werner sent Sommer the wrong way and raised three fingers
It was a night which will be remembered for the brilliance of Timo Werner. On the week of renewing his deal at Leipzig, Werner proved his worth to his team's hopes this season as his hattrick proved the difference between the two sides.
Werner showed his ability to create goals out of nothing and finished every chance he had. This is the polar opposite of Gladbach's forwards. Embolo had three clear chances throughout the game, whilst Plea was found off-balance when any chance came his way.
Leipzig did not play the prettiest football you are likely to see this season, but they were efficient in front of goal and took three points away from Borussia Park.
Gladbach offered a threat in the opening 20 minutes of the match but lacked the composure in front of goal to pot Leipzig to the sword. A massive problem for Gladbach will be their form at home.
It will be impossible for Gladbach to finish in Europe if they do not see a dramatic turn around in this department, having not won a match since 26 January 2019.