Raising the bar
Sandro Schwarz and Rouven Schröder take stock of the season that was and give an insight into the squad plan for the upcoming season
The players have said their goodbyes and started their summer vacation. The coach will begin his time off on the weekend. But, the sporting director remains hard at work, focused on transfers and squad planning. Both Sandro Schwarz and Rouven Schröder took the time to speak with the media a final time on Tuesday about the preparations for next season (which will begin on 28th June), as well as the plan for next season. “We want to continue the way we ended this season. We’re still ambitious. We’re still living our dream and going our own way,” said Schröder. “We’re staying true to ourselves, and staying grounded so that there’s no reason to fear about the future of Mainz 05.”
Since Sunday, workers have taken over the dressing rooms in the main grandstand of the Bruchwegstadion. Several areas that the players use on a daily basis will be renovated prior to the start of pre-season. “We’ve always changed something ahead of the new season, even if it’s just painting the walls a new colour,” said Schröder. This time, however, the renovations will be more extensive. The video analysis room will be completely redesigned. New paint, flooring, and new furniture will be installed. The dressing rooms will be changed and the sections for the youth academy and the team mangers will also be improved.
On vacation until 27th June
The players received their vacation workout plans on the Sunday following their fantastic season finale in the OPEL ARENA. Everyone will have to be back for 27th June. The next day is when the check-ups will begin, including a medical check and fitness testing. The first training session is planned to take place on 30th June (16:00 CEST).
The 4-2 win against TSG Hoffenheim, which saw the Zerofivers finish in twelfth place, was the high point of a series of successes at home, which essentially began with a 3-0 win against Schalke 04 and saw the team reach a new level of quality that impressed the fans in the stadium. Mainz scored 15 goals in total against Freiburg, Düsseldorf, Leipzig and Hoffenheim. Add in the derby win against Frankfurt and the confirmation of being able to be successful against top teams.
Dividing the season into four phases
Schwarz has divided the season into four phases: the time of defensive stability at the start of the season, the time of better offensive after switching to a diamond formation, the time of complacency when the team didn’t deliver any results for weeks following a good start into the second half of the season. And finally, the fourth phase which combined all the previous ones. The one in which Mainz developed a seldom-seen strength, were able to cope with setbacks, and scored beautifully-created goals.
“You can always do better,” said Schwarz. “The big difference compared to last season, is that we’ve seen some growth. We took a lot from the atmosphere around us. Now, we have a solid base and a strong mindset. We need to take all that back onto the pitch with us during pre-season. In terms of our game, the bar has already been raised.”