Early goal after 43 seconds, missed chances and a serious injury. For Mainz 05, the home game against FC Augsburg was a bitter disappointment. Now it will be difficult in the next few weeks.
The flash starters from FC Augsburg have got rid of almost all relegation worries, the FSV Mainz 05, however, must tremble more than ever for relegation. In the heated basement duel at the Rheinhessen, the FCA won 1-0 (1-0) on Sunday and go to the remaining three games with a reassuring cushion of seven points on Fortuna Düsseldorf and Werder Bremen (both 28) in ranks 16 and 17 . With the Mainz (31) in 15th place, the situation is becoming more and more threatening.
“This will be a tough one”
Florian Niederlechner, who had previously missed 857 minutes, scored with his goal after 43 seconds that Augsburg could already make the relegation on Wednesday with a win against TSG Hoffenheim and plan for the tenth consecutive Bundesliga season. Mainz, meanwhile, faces an enormously difficult task at Borussia Dortmund on Wednesday (both 8.30 p.m. / Sky) before Bremen, on the penultimate match day, comes to a possibly decisive duel for relegation to the Rhine.
“Such a quick blow to the neck is shocking at first. We put it away well, but didn’t take our chances,” said Mainz-based Karim Onisiwo at Sky: “Now we have Dortmund. It’s going to be a tough one, but you can also get something there.”
Augsburg sets a record
Given the precarious situation, both coaches had called the game a key game in the relegation battle. But instead of taking the momentum from the derby victory at Eintracht Frankfurt (2-0), the 05ers were caught cold. The last hapless Niederlechner early took advantage of the unsorted order of the Mainz back team and scored his twelfth goal of the season. It was the third Augsburg goal of the season in the opening minute – the Fuggerstädter set the league record of MSV Duisburg (1974/75) and 1. FC Saarbrücken (1985/86).
Duels with consequences: Philipp Max (left) and Levin Öztunali had to be treated. (Source: Kai Pfaffenbach / Reuters)
As a result, the battle-focused game expected by both coaches developed in advance. After a nasty head-to-head clash with FCA defender Felix Uduokhai (17th), Mainz striker Taiwo Awoniyi remained motionless and had to be carried off the square with a ruff. More information about the injury is available here.
Augsburg missed the 2-0
Mainz didn’t get into the game for a long time and were lucky that Ruben Vargas narrowly missed the goal in the 31st minute. The hosts only became dangerous at the end of the first half – but then all the more. First, Augsburg’s Philipp Max cleared a shot by Jean-Philippe Mateta (39.) on the line, FCA goalkeeper Andreas Luthe then parried strongly against Karim Onisiwo (43.) and again Mateta (45. + 3).
Even after the change of sides, Mainz remained the game-determining team, but struggled against the lower and lower Augsburg back team due to too many inaccuracies. The guests got the more dangerous chances after counterattacks, Vargas (61.) negligently missed the 2-0 from close range, a little later Niederlechner (63.) had his second goal on the foot. Mainz pressed in the heated final phase, but was not compulsory enough.