Bayer 04 Leverkusen beat RB Leipzig 3-2 in dramatic fashion in this week’s Topspiel, maintaining their hunt for the Meisterschale.
RB Leipzig started very brightly and after just seven minutes, loanee Xavi fired the hosts ahead.
The game would then to and fro between each side, before Piero Hincapié netted what was to be the winner after 91 minutes to ensure Alonso side’s title surge remains intact.
With two losses on the bounce and having looked the more dangerous side at times tonight, Marco Rose will have much to think about heading into next week.
RB Leipzig still have some growing pains
Rose's side have now lost two games in a row in the Bundesliga, scoring just twice and conceding four in the process.
It is clear to see that this season is transitory and Rose does not have his squad figured out completely, a common theme in Leipzig.
Particularly at the back, things do not seem quite as they should considering the talent the squad possesses.
It is both telling of Leverkusen’s quality, but also of the squad’s tendency to concede goals that this result is identical to the opening game of the Bundesliga season that featured these two sides.
Rose will feel particularly aggrieved that his defence conceded from two corners, one of which turned out to be the winner just minutes before full-time.
The way in which both Tah and Hincapie found space will be particularly disappointing for the Leipzig Head Coach, especially considering Tah is a known threat from corners this season.
It is hard not to think Leipzig will not be kicking themselves, letting what could have been a massive point or even all three slip through their fingers in an avoidable manner.
Jeremie Frimpong leaving the pitch injured will be a worry for Leverkusen
Despite the obvious elation and euphoria surrounding the win, there may yet be a dark cloud lingering as Leverkusen’s rapid wingback Frimpong needed to be replaced after just 30 minutes.
The Leverkusen man was involved in a knee-on-knee collision with Leipzig's David Raum and quickly realised he was unable to carry on.
Frimpong has been one of Leverkusen’s chief providers this season with six assists, but also finding the back of the net with his trademark storming runs on six occasions.
Depending on the severity of the issue that forced the Dutch international off, Tella might have to be fielded there against Gladbach next week.
Frimpong and Grimaldo have 27 goal contributions combined in the Bundesliga alone, forming an excellent partnership since the latter arrived from Benfica last summer.
Losing Frimpong’s offensive contributions in the midst of AFCON and potentially beyond, would be a massive blow to Alonso’s squad.
The league leaders will hope his premature exit was a cautionary measure and not a long-term absence for one of their most important players.
Dani Olmo's return is a massive boost for Leipzig's already potent attack
In the starting eleven against Leverkusen, Olmo looked as if he was never away.
Injuries have kept the Spanish midfielder out of action for a long time, making just seven appearances in the Bundesliga this season.
Olmo’s return was almost seamless this evening, combining excellently with Xavi and Openda up-front.
On his return in a big game, he played a perfectly weighted ball to Loïs Openda who finished the chance on a rapid counter attack.
The Spaniard's return and Openda and Xavi’s fantastic form is well-timed for Rose, in the top-four hunt.
Leverkusen found a way to win, like all would-be champions must
With 91 minutes on the clock and only three minutes left of stoppage time, it looked as though Leverkusen were going to drop points for the fourth time this season.
However, Hincapié stepped up from a corner, relatively unmarked and fired home from close range.
To concede so early on in the Topspiel against dangerous opposition and come back to ultimately win the game, showed a real desire and will to win from Alonso’s side.
The manner in which the visitors snatched it at the death is reminiscent of the way in which FC Bayern Munich constantly find a way to win when it comes to claiming silverware at the end of the season.
Alonso will quite rightly keep his players grounded and stress the fact that just under half of the season’s games are still to be played but, it will not be underestimated just how important this win could be.
Die Werkself have blown teams out of the water at times this season.
However, the wins against FC Augsburg and Leipzig shows a different side to this Leverkusen team. One that knows how to find that all-important winning goal.
Another thing that will delight Alonso is the variety of goal scorers, from Palacios last week to Tella, Tah and Hincapié this week.