Schwarz: “We are in a good place”
The Zerofivers impressed with a superb display against SC Freiburg; made many opportunities and got their first away win of the season in a 3-1 victory.
Last season, Mainz won their first away game on matchday 23. Now, the Zerofivers have already surpassed that hurdle. Sandro Schwarz’s team beat SC Freiburg 3-1 and are now on 15 points and sit ninth in the table. “We contributed to the great atmosphere at the game and that is important for us Zerofivers,” said the coach after his team’s second victory in a row. The team celebrated with the 1500 travelling fans at the Schwarzwaldstadion.
The first half performance from Mainz 05 was a sight to behold, as they completely dominated the game; constantly pressurising the opponents into mistakes. Schwarz decided not to change his front three, which worked perfectly. Jean-Philippe Mateta on the right, Jean-Paul Boëtius in the middle and Robin Quaison on the left all pressurised the Freiburg backline. With the high pressure from the attackers, it allowed full-backs Daniel Brosinski and Aaron Martin to push up out of their own half and join the attacks. Both full-backs battled and won many balls, supported alongside by the powerful Kunde Malong and nippy Danny Latza, who together overwhelmed the Freiburg midfield.
Schröder: “Best away performance awarded”
“In the first half, we showed our best away performance so far and were rewarded with a two goal lead. Freiburg were visibly impressed,” said Rouven Schröder. The Zerofivers used their superiority to get their first goal; Jean-Philippe Gbamin scoring a wonderful long-shot, followed up by Mateta’s header from a Boëtius cross. The Zerofivers could have easily got a third goal in the opening phase. “We wanted to build on our performance against Bremen and we played fantastic football for the first 30 minutes and then defended well. We fought for every ball, our build-up play was good and we just basically put in a great performance,” emphasised Schwarz.
The opposition coach also praised the Mainz performance. “Mainz played very well on the day. We were not aggressive enough and were not good at keeping hold of the ball. Of course we had the chances in the second half to score more goals but we had already lost the game against Mainz in the first half an hour,” said Christian Streich. “Mainz will improve more because they have extremely good, fast, talented players in their team.”
The SC Freiburg coach reacted at half time and changed from four at the back to a 3-5-2 formation to try and stop the Zerofivers. The hosts showed that they were able to come up with goalscoring chances and scored one goal in the second half. “We weren’t able to keep up the pressure like we did in the first half but it’s hard to dominate a team for 90 minutes against a team like Freiburg,” said the Zerofiver’s coach.
Third goal at the right time
In the 49th minute of the game, after a long ball from Gbamin, which Quaison had closed down close to the keeper, was fumbled by the Freiburg keeper but Quaison did not realise and Freiburg got away with it. Mainz countered well against Freiburg and created further chances, with both Karim Onisiwo and Danny Latza having chances to score.
However, in the second half, it was SC Freiburg who scored as Roland Sallai made it 2-1. Nevertheless, only three minutes later, Mainz brought back their two goal cushion thanks to Onisiwo. “We scored our third goal at the right time,” said Schwarz. “The way in which we earned the three points today was good. The quality of our performance was top. In the first half you saw good football being played. We knocked the ball around well, got the ball out wide quickly.” The head coach said it feels great when, “When you play the way you want to play. We are in a good way.”