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Clear win against Mainz: VfB consolidates third place – football

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Clear win against Mainz: VfB consolidates third place – football

On the 21st matchday of the Bundesliga, VfB Stuttgart won comfortably against 1. FSV Mainz 05 and thus consolidated third place in the table. The zero fives are still deeply stuck in the relegation battle.

VfB Stuttgart won 3-1 (2-0) against Mainz 05 and thus achieved their third league win in a row. Maximilian Mittelstädt gave the Swabians the lead (45th+2), Jamie Leweling increased the score to 2-0 before half-time (45th+5). Deniz Undav made everything clear in the 73rd minute with his 14th goal of the season. Three minutes later, Ludovic Ajorque only managed a consolation goal for Mainz, who were threatened with relegation.

VfB starts without Guirassy

In comparison to the bitter cup defeat against Leverkusen, VfB coach Sebastian Hoeneß made three changes to his team: Because keeper Alexander Nübel was out with hip problems, Fabian Bredlow was between the posts for the first time this season. Anthony Rouault and Josha Vagnoman initially took a seat on the bench, with Leweling and Pascal Stenzel starting for them. Serhou Guirassy, ​​who had virtually single-handedly defeated Mainz with his hat trick in the first leg (3-1), was available as a substitute after recovering from muscular problems.

Mainz coach Jan Siewert rotated to six positions after the 1-1 draw against Union Berlin: Jessic Ngankam and Dominik replaced Tom Krauß, Leandro Barreiro, Edimilson Fernandes, Danny da Costa (bench) and Karim Onisiwo (not in the squad, thigh problems). Kohr, Merveille Papela, Andreas Hanche-Olsen and Josuha Guilavogui into the starting eleven.

Game interruption due to fan protest

The third-place team from Stuttgart started confidently and had their first chance of the game after just a few seconds. But Undav’s shot from eleven meters came too centrally on goal and 05 goalkeeper Robin Zentner parried confidently. In the fifth minute, Mainz came dangerously close to the goal, but instead of bringing the ball towards the goal, Ajorque headed it across and VfB was able to clear at the second attempt.

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From the ninth minute onwards, the VfB fans threw tennis balls onto the pitch in protest against the planned investor involvement and referee Deniz Aytekin had to interrupt the game for almost a quarter of an hour. After that, the game really picked up speed and Mainz, who were threatened with relegation, had a great chance to take the lead: Ngankam made his way to the baseline and lifted the ball to the second post with a lot of overview. Papela rushed towards it completely freely, but didn’t hit the ball properly as it fell (22nd). “We definitely have to take advantage of one of the two chances to score,” 05 coach Siewert said angrily after the game. Just four minutes later, Atakan Karazor also missed a great opportunity on the other side: his shot from around 17 meters flew just past the right post. Chris Führich had the biggest chance of the game so far in the 40th minute: VfB countered with Undav, who served Führich with a half-high ball in the middle. The national player ran completely freely towards the penalty area. But instead of passing across to Leweling, Führich wanted to play around Zentner and failed.

Mittelstädt and Leweling put VfB in the lead

In the second minute of stoppage time, the Swabians did better. Stenzel caught an imprecise pass from Angelo Stiller and crossed into the middle at full speed. In the six-meter area, no one from Mainz really went to the ball and the ball slipped through to Mittelstädt, who scored with a well-placed shot into the far corner to give Stuttgart a 1-0 lead. Just three minutes later, the hosts immediately followed up: After further preparatory work by Stenzel, Leweling smashed the ball into the net from eleven meters to make it 2-0. “The boys are able to do a lot of things really well,” Hoeneß praised his team after the game, “it’s a lot of fun with the boys.”

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Undav makes everything clear for VfB

Mainz coach Siewert reacted to the double blow and brought in three new players at the start of the second half. Jae-sung Lee, Marco Richter and Barreiro came in for Papela, Ngankam and Kohr. The Zero Fives started actively, but were unable to assert themselves decisively in the opposing half of the game. The long balls to Ajorque also had no effect. VfB, on the other hand, continued to play courageously forward and had the next good chance with Leweling, but the 22-year-old was denied by Zentner (53′).

After a good hour, VfB coach Hoeneß made three changes and sent Guirassy, ​​Vagnoman and Rouault onto the field for the double assists Stenzel, Leweling and Führich. The game then plodded along for a bit until Mainz once again came dangerously close to the goal with Ajorque in the 71st minute. But his header flew just past the right post. Just two minutes later, after winning the ball on the halfway line, Rouault sent Undav down with a long ball. He took the ball with his chest, started dribbling and put the ball past Zentner into the goal to make it 3-0 (73′). An individual performance from VfB Stuttgart’s now 14-time goalscorer, which should also impress national coach Julian Nagelsmann. “I always try to bring my quality onto the pitch week after week and I hope it continues to work that way and I can score more goals,” said the 27-year-old, commenting on his run. “The team is having fun, I’m having fun and then everything becomes easier,” continued Stuttgart’s second-best striker. Mainz was able to reduce the score to 1:3 thanks to Ajorque’s goal (76′), but there was nothing more possible for the guests.

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Stuttgart meets Darmstadt, Mainz meets Augsburg

With the deserved victory, the Swabians consolidate third place in the table, Mainz, second to last, is still deep in the relegation battle and is now nine points behind 15th Union Berlin. Next Saturday (3:30 p.m.) VfB have to play in Darmstadt, the zero fives host Augsburg.

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