FACTS ABOUT THE DUEL WITH HOFFENHEIM
Good experience in Kraichgau, late goals & a TSG player in top form
The second away game of the current Bundesliga season is on the agenda: The Mainz 05 players are away to ninth-placed TSG 1899 Hoffenheim on Saturday afternoon - for the first time in a year and a half with away fans behind them. A look at the statistics should give the 05 supporters additional hope.
The 2-1 away win in Svensson's first meeting as Mainz head coach with TSG in March, however, no longer played a role in match preparation, as the Dane stressed at the pre-match press conference. "The coach is the same, many players are still there. But we are focusing on Hoffenheim's last games this season. They play a tad more aggressively, are on the move a lot and have playing class. I also think that the speed in their game has increased again, which doesn't make the task any easier," said Svensson.
Mainz and TSG have met 24 times in the German top flight so far. From Mainz's point of view, the record is impressive: The Rheinhessen side have won ten matches, the team from Kraichgau has prevailed seven times and the points have been shared just as often.
Facts and figures on #TSGM05
A good omen?
Of all the current Bundesliga teams, only SC Freiburg (six) had more away wins than TSG Hoffenheim (five), and the Zerofivers were always accurate: Mainz's 20 away goals in Sinsheim are only bettered by VfL Wolfsburg (24) among the current Bundesliga teams.
When it comes to scoring chances, however, no other club can hold a candle to TSG so far this season. Hoffenheim have converted a whopping 73 per cent of their top-class chances into goals - a league best.
Head coach Bo Svensson and his Hoffenheim counterpart Sebastian Hoeneß have only faced each other once before in the Bundesliga - with the better outcome for the Dane. On matchday 26 of last season, the Mainz side prevailed. Before that, the two had already met four times in the U19 Bundesliga Southwest. In the duels between FSV and Bayern Munich's youth team, which Hoeneß coached at the time, there were three draws and one Bayern victory.
Hoffenheim scored four goals in the final quarter of the current Bundesliga season, no other team more than two. Two of those goals came in the 90th minute or later - including the latest goal of the current season (Sebastian Rudy after 94:40 minutes against FC Augsburg).
Croatian top scorer
TSG attacker Andrej Kramaric's record so far is impressive: In three games, the Croatian has contributed four assists, only Bayern's Robert Lewandowski (five goals) and Dortmund's Erling Haaland (three goals, two assists) have better scorers so far. Kramaric, however, is still waiting for a goal of his own.
In the three Bundesliga appearances so far, the Zerofivers have conceded only two goals, 0-2 in Bochum, and kept a clean sheet in the two home games. Only VfL Wolfsburg are currently in a better position.
Hoffenheim scored eight times in the first three Bundesliga matches of the current season. Only in the 2013/14 season did the Kraichgauer score more goals at the same time (ten).