Mainz rule out late drop in standings
The Zerofivers are looking to add another win after their success in Freiburg.
A clear win against Freiburg ended a weeks-long losing run for Mainz and secured an important three points, as the club look to keep playing top-flight football next season. Going into their match against second-place Borussia Dortmund (Saturday 18:30 CEST), Mainz are a little bit more relaxed, but still highly focused. The Zerofivers are seeking to add another win to their recent success, as well as showing that they will fight to squeeze as many points as possible out of the remaining matches in the season.
“Last season, we showed what we can do when placed under pressure. We’re confident we can deliver a strong performance against Dortmund on Saturday,” the head coach said during a press conference on Thursday. “Our success in creating chances for ourselves has helped restore our self-confidence.” According to Schwarz, this could be clearly felt amongst the team the past few days. “It’s a good feeling for the team to be rewarded for their effort. We can win games if we’re efficient. Not everything will go in our favour against Dortmund, so we will have to be effective in areas that count.” What his team will definitely need? “We have to create simple chances for ourselves and play a quick and direct game.”
The quality is there
Mainz are not expecting Dortmund to still be reeling from their 5-0 loss to Bayern München. “We know of their quality and aren’t using the Bayern match as a starting point. Dortmund will be looking inwards and will be aiming to show their 80,000 fans that they can do better, like they’ve proven numerous times this season.” Mainz will be looking for support from the 4,500 fans that will be travelling to Dortmund for the match. Schwarz will also be looking for his team to improve on some aspects from the Freiburg game, including “better defending, creating passing lanes, and keeping their shape.”
Clear instructions from the coach, as Mainz look to complete the double against Dortmund this season. For sporting director Rouven Schröder, who confirmed his commitment to the club during the press conference, seeing Mainz’s losing run come to an end was a happy occasion. “However, we don’t define ourselves solely based on wins. Obviously, all of us are hoping that things continue the way they have been going for us recently. One thing that we’re ruling out is a drop in the table, given the distance between us and the relegation zone.” Not in the squad for this weekend’s match is captain Niko Bungert, who will miss out due to illness.