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Mainz logo
Bundesliga | Gameweek 29
Apr 13, 2024 at 2.30pm UK
Mewa Arena
Hoffenheim logo

4 - 1

Burkardt (47'), Mwene (51'), Gruda (63'), Onisiwo (88')
FT(HT: 0-1)
Kaderabek (19')
Promel (39'), Kabak (83')

Preview: Mainz 05 vs. Hoffenheim - prediction, team news, lineups

Sports Mole previews Saturday's Bundesliga clash between Mainz 05 and Hoffenheim, including predictions, team news and possible lineups.

Mainz 05 will continue their quest to stave off relegation from the Bundesliga when they take on TSG Hoffenheim at the Mewa Arena on Saturday afternoon.

The hosts head into gameweek 28 in the relegation playoff spot with 23 points while the visitors moved up to eighth place last week, now on 36 points with six league games left to play.

Match preview

Mainz 05's Dominik Kohr celebrates scoring their first goal with Silvan Widmer on February 24, 2024© Reuters

Two Bundesliga teams will face automatic relegation, while another will have the opportunity for redemption through the relegation playoff, and as it stands, Mainz still have it all to do if they hope to extend their 15-year tenure in the top flight.

After ending the last two seasons in the top half, Die Nullfunfer have experienced a major drop-off in their performances this term, which led to the dismissal of two managers before the appointment of Bo Henriksen in mid-February.

Since the arrival of the Danish boss, though, there has been a notable improvement in the side's performances as they have only suffered two defeats in their last seven games, and those were against league leaders Bayer Leverkusen and second-placed Bayern Munich last month.

Following that loss to the Bavarians, Karnevalsverein bounced back in fine style with a 2-0 win over Bochum before holding RB Leipzig to a goalless draw. Last week, they clinched an impressive 4-0 win over basement club Darmstadt at home, which saw them trim the gap to safety to just three points.

Mainz are unbeaten at home under Henriksen (W3 D1 L0) and will be confident in their chances of securing a third consecutive win at Mewa Arena, having only lost to this opponent once in their last seven meetings while winning four and drawing the remaining two.

Hoffenheim's Grischa Promel is shown a red card by referee Benjamin Brand on January 12, 2024© Reuters

Meanwhile, with 36 points after 28 games, Hoffenheim are dreaming of a return to European competition for the first time since 2019-20, when they finished in sixth place with 52 points.

Die Kraichgauer entered the tightly contested battle for a berth in next season's Conference League with a 3-1 victory over rivals Augsburg in the Bundesliga on Sunday, which also snapped up a three-match losing streak dating back to the start of March.

Against FCA, Pellegrino Matarazzo's side took the lead in the 17th minute when Wout Weghorst easily tapped in Pavel Kaderabek's low cross. They doubled their advantage three minutes later before ending any chance of a comeback for their opponents when Ihlas Bebou sealed the game with a third goal in the 90th minute.

However, Hoffenheim have struggled on the road recently. After winning their first four away games at the start of the season, they have only secured one victory in their last nine, and since the start of November, no side has picked up fewer points on their travels than Die Kraichgauer (five).

Mainz 05 Bundesliga form:

Hoffenheim Bundesliga form:

Team News

Mainz 05's Robin Zentner speaks to referee Matthias Jollenbeck on November 1, 2023© Reuters

Mainz have a few notable absentees for this match with Maxim Leitsch out until the end of the month with a groin injury while Stefan Bell has been ruled out for the remainder of the season.

Brajan Gruda is flagged as a major doubt owing to an illness and Nelson Weiper is still working his way back to full fitness, which will likely see him feature on the bench at best for this match.

Hoffenheim are expected to remain without the services of first-choice centre-back Ozan Kabak until next month, with the Turkish international currently nursing an injury to his thigh.

Max Moerstedt (leg), Mergim Berisha (ACL) and Marco John (ACL) are the others that will miss out here due to injury, though the former could return for next week's home game against Borussia Monchengladbach.

Mainz 05 possible starting lineup:
Zentner; Van den Berg, Guilavogui, Hanche-Olsen; Caci, Barreiro, Amiri, Mwene; Lee, Onisiwo; Burkardt

Hoffenheim possible starting lineup:
Baumann; Akpoguma, Grillitsch, Drexler; Kaderabek, Promel, Stach, Jurasek; Kramaric; Weghorst, Beier

SM words green background

We say: Mainz 05 2-2 Hoffenheim

While Mainz have struggled for consistency for the majority of the season, they are unbeaten at home under Bo Henriksen and won their last two games without conceding. Matches involving these two sides have not been short of goals of late and we are expecting another high-scoring encounter here, though we feel that there will be nothing to split them at the final whistle.

For data analysis of the most likely results, scorelines and more for this match please click here.

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1Bayer LeverkusenB. Leverkusen00000000
2Borussia DortmundDortmund00000000
3Borussia MonchengladbachBorussia M'bach00000000
4Eintracht FrankfurtFrankfurt00000000
6Bayern MunichBayern00000000
7Union BerlinUnion Berlin00000000
8Mainz 05Mainz00000000
10Holstein Kiel00000000
11RB Leipzig00000000
13St Pauli00000000
16VfL BochumVfL Bochum00000000
18Werder Bremen00000000

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