"It was a really tough result to take and we're really, really disappointed because we really had other ideas, and we were so excited about playing in front of a packed crowd again," Marco Rose said afterwards. "Leipzig were really effective and both in and around the box they were more ruthless and uncompromising than us."
Whatever the returning home fans had hoped to bring to the party to ensure a victory was soon forgotten when Christopher Nkunku supplied Konrad Laimer for the opener. A deflection helped the Austrian midfielder score his second before the break as Leipzig made the most of their chances.
"From time to time I tease Konrad a bit, because when he shoots in training, he hits everything but not the goal," Leipzig head coach Domenico Tedesco said afterwards.
Leipzig confirmed their superiority in the second half, and even had the last word when Dani Olmo's outstanding goal rendered Donyell Malen's header nothing more than a consolation.
The win, combined withFreiburg's loss to Bayern, strengthens RB Leipzig's hold on fourth and boosts the confidence of Domenico Tedesco's side ahead of a critical stage of the season in which RB are still trying to win both the German Cup and the Europa League.
Haaland's return brings no luck
For Dortmund, the season now looks set to end without any trophies.
"We know it wasn't good but we don't have to act like we lost 4-1 and were outplayed," Mats Hummels said afterwards.
Erling Haaland had not started a game at the Westfalenstadion since January 14 and an injury scare during the international break threatened to derail his return further, but he started against RB Leipzig.
His productivity for Dortmund has never been in doubt, having scored 16 goals in the Bundesliga before his two-month injury lay off, but on Saturday he did not offer much of a threat. Against Leipzig he hit an early first-half opportunity across the face of goal but was otherwise quiet as the the 21-year-old's future continues to be a talking point.
Young Jude Bellingham had never played in front of a full Yellow Wall and its 24,000 fans before today, but the 18-year-old was left shaking his head at the home fans after another disappointing Dortmund display.