Berlin (AFP) – RB Leipzig got their Bundesliga campaign off to a stuttering start, with a 1-1 draw away at Stuttgart on Sunday despite a clinical first-half strike from French forward Christopher Nkunku.

Despite 68 percent possession and chalking up 27 shots to Stuttgart’s 11, Leipzig were unable to convert their dominance into an opening day win.

Leipzig got on the board in the eighth minute through Nkunku, who threaded a sliding shot past the outstretched hands of Stuttgart keeper Florian Mueller and into the bottom left corner of the net.

Fresh off being named Germany’s footballer of the year for his contributions in the 2021-22 season, Nkunku was dangerous throughout, often dropping back well into his own half to retrieve the ball and kickstart an attack.

Leipzig dominated the early stages, before the home side got a goal back against the run of play through former Juventus midfielder Naouirou Ahamada.

Ahamada curled the ball into the bottom corner of the net in the 31st minute, celebrating even before the ball went in.

Leipzig coach Dominico Tedesco made several attacking changes in the dying stages of the match as the visitors went in search of a winner, bringing on striker Alexander Soerloth and Emil Forsberg in the 85th minute.

In Sunday’s late game, promoted Schalke travel to FC Cologne.