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Profis 18.05.2024 - 20:30 Uhr

FSV secure survival in spectacular fashion

The 05ers picked up their first away win of the season in Wolfsburg with the support of thousands of Mainz fans, consequently securing their place in the top flight for a 16th consecutive season

WE’RE STAYING UP! The 05ers secured survival with a 3-1 win away at VfL Wolfsburg as goals from Brajan Gruda, Sepp van den Berg and Jonny Burkardt turned the game around following Kevin Paredes’ opening goal for the hosts.

Bo Henriksen made one change from the win against Dortmund as Phillipp Mwene came into the side in place of Anthony Caci after suspension. The Frenchman was on the bench as he wasn’t fit enough to start the game.

Gruda cancels out Paredes’ opener

The 05ers took their time to get into the game in Wolfsburg, while the hosts looked to get forward from the very first minute. However, it was FSV who had the first chance of the game after less than 180 seconds. Mwene got to the by-line on the left-hand side and put a low cross into the centre, where Jonny Burkardt’s first-time effort went narrowly wide (3’). The hosts then threatened in front of goal for the first time just minutes later. Lovro Majer played the ball into the box from a free kick on the right-hand side of the pitch and Jonas Wind got his head on the ball, but his effort from six yards went comfortably over the bar (7’). The action slowed a little in the following stages, meaning that it was no surprise that the game remained goalless after 15 minutes. However, VfL took the lead shortly afterwards after winning the ball back on the halfway line and springing a sharp counterattack. Maximilian Arnold played the ball out left to Jakub Kaminski, who got the better of Silvan Widmer and put a perfectly-timed cross into the six-yard box, where Paredes was left with a simple finish from four yards out (18’). The 05ers had been unable to build on a tidy showing in the opening minutes and now needed to find a way back into the game if they were to secure survival on their own. Fortunately, Mainz understood the task they faced and struck back in ice-cold fashion with their second chance of the game. Burkardt picked out Nadiem Amiri after winning the ball back in midfield, and FSV’s number 18 played Gruda in behind with a clever ball. The Mainz academy graduate left Koen Casteels with no chance with his precise finish from 14 yards out (24’). FSV had woken up at this point and Amiri unleashed a volley from range following a cleared corner after 31 minutes, but his effort went around two yards wide of the VfL goal. Mainz were the more lively side in the second half of the first period and were well set-up to deal with the hosts’ tempo and a team who were still highly motivated despite having already secured survival.

The visitors, supported by around 6,000 travelling fans, remained focused on the task at hand. First, Burkardt got on the end of a long ball and was brought to ground in the penalty area, but referee Frank Willenborg didn’t deem there to be enough contact from Sebastiaan Bornauw to point to the spot (33’). Following that, the last chance of the first half fell to Leandro Barreiro as he tried his luck from 20 yards in the 42nd minute, but he was denied by a strong reflex save from Casteels. Both sides headed for the changing rooms shortly afterwards following an evenly-matched first half.

05ers turn the game around and make sure of survival

While FSV were unchanged for the second half, Wolfsburg made a substitution by bringing on Patrick Wimmer for the goalscorer Paredes. The first few minutes after half time were not particularly eventful. The hosts first threatened in the 56th minute when Wimmer broke through on the right and played it into the middle, but Dominik Kohr was there to clear before Wind could let fly. The visitors sat back but remained generally solid and left no space for the opponent. On the hour, Mainz almost took the lead from the same combination that had led to their goal before the break. Amiri powered through midfield before playing it perfectly to Gruda, whose curling effort went just over the bar (62’). While VfL were only playing for pride, it remained a nail-biting affair for FSV. It was clear that a draw would be enough at that point, but a goal for Union against SC Freiburg as well as one for Wolfsburg would have resulted in the relegation play-off that nobody wanted. These combination of circumstances led to the 05ers playing slightly more cautiously against a Wolfsburg side who were piling on the pressure. Mainz were at that moment primarily focused on protecting the point.

This meant an Amiri set piece was needed to bring FSV even closer to securing an improbable survival which would not have been thought possible in the winter. Sepp van den Berg threw himself at the January signing’s ball-in. His initial effort was saved by Casteels, but he managed to scramble the ball over the line from the follow-up to make it 2-0 to Mainz (71’). The next few minutes didn’t matter from a 05 perspective, as, in the 85th minute, Hanche-Olsen played a long ball forward which Gruda ran on to, and he kept his cool once again to cross from the touchline into Burkardt. Casteels couldn’t quite keep out his header and the ball went over the line. This was survival confirmed. The celebrations could begin in Wolfsburg, Mainz and everywhere in between. NEVER GIVE UP – then, now and forever.


VfL: Casteels - Fischer, Lacroix, Bornauw, Zesiger - Majer, Arnold, Baku (76’ Cerny), Kaminski, Paredes (46’ Wimmer) - Wind (76’ Behrens)
FSV: Zentner - Widmer (74’ Caci), Kohr, van den Berg, Hanche-Olsen, Mwene - Barreiro, Amiri (90+3’ Guilavogui) - Gruda (87’ Krauß), Burkardt (90+3’ Richter), Lee (74’ Ajorque)

Goals: 1-0 Paredes (18’), 1-1 Gruda (24’), 1-2 van den Berg (71’), 1-3 Burkardt (85’)
Attendance: 28,005
Officials: Frank Willenborg (Thorben Siewer, Christian Leicher, Patrick Ittrich, Günter Perl)

05ER.TV 18.05.2024

We believed!

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