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Mainz logo
Bundesliga | Gameweek 26
Mar 16, 2024 at 2.30pm UK
Mewa Arena
VfL Bochum

Mainz
2 - 0
VfL Bochum

Burkardt (45+3' pen., 71')
Kohr (1'), Ajorque (8'), van den Berg (84'), Amiri (88')
FT(HT: 1-0)

Bernardo (33'), Osterhage (47'), Schlotterbeck (86')

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

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

Mainz 05 will seek to recover from a humiliating defeat to the champions last weekend when they welcome VfL Bochum to the Mewa Arena on Saturday.

The relegation favourites were thrashed 8-1 at the Allianz Arena by Bayern Munich last weekend, keeping them in huge danger of the drop this season.


Match preview

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

That annihilation at the hands of Bayern has greatly enhanced the odds of Mainz suffering relegation, potentially ending their 15-year stay in the top flight, as manager Bo Henriksen would likely take his place alongside the likes of Jurgen Klopp and Thomas Tuchel in Mainz folklore if he keeps the club up from this position.

Mainz have won just two of their 25 league games this season, and they remain nine points adrift of safety after last week's crushing defeat.

Upcoming opponents Bochum are the side they will be looking to target though, sitting just above the drop zone, and they can cut the gap to six points if they are to come out on top in this must-win encounter.

If that fails, Koln are not exactly pulling up trees in the relegation playoff spot, just two points ahead of Mainz, and that could be a way out for one of the three weakest sides in the Bundesliga to avoid the drop, rather undeservedly it must be said.

Conceding an xG of 6.6 last weekend suggests the pulverising defeat was wholly justified and did not flatter the Bavarians, giving Henriksen plenty to worry about both on the pitch and mentally within the squad.

Bochum have often been kind opponents for Mainz though, as they have won both fixtures here since the two were reunited in the top flight back in 2022, and the hosts have won eight of their 11 all-time meetings in the Bundesliga.

That will be of great concern to a Bochum side who continue to falter since their headline-making win over Bayern last month.

Bochum's Philipp Forster looks dejected after Schalke 04's Marius Bulter scores their second goal on March 4, 2023© Reuters

Since the 3-2 success over Tuchel's side, bruising 5-2 and 4-1 defeats to Borussia Monchengladbach and RB Leipzig followed, respectively.

Their losing run was extended to three last weekend too, when Freiburg also went to the Ruhrstadion and left with all three points thanks to a 2-1 victory, despite the best efforts of Bochum to mount a late fightback.

Having gone eight games unbeaten at home dating back to September, back-to-back home defeats will come as a slight shock and will leave Bochum looking over their shoulder slightly.

Bochum's defence has not been exactly watertight anywhere this season, but on the road it is particularly worrying, as Thomas Letsch's men have allowed 33 goals in 12 away games this season.

It is therefore no surprise that 365 days have passed since Bochum have beaten anybody that was not Darmstadt on the road, but bucking that trend here would go down extremely well with the club's hierarchy.

Mainz 05 Bundesliga form:

VfL Bochum Bundesliga form:


Team News

VfL Bochum coach Thomas Letsch before the match on December 16, 2023© Reuters

Nadiem Amiri scored the solitary Mainz goal in their 8-1 defeat last weekend, but the midfielder has missed training this week and is now doubtful for this one.

Amiri's midfielder partner Josuha Guilavogui has also been absent after a very scary moment at the Allianz, as the Frenchman was momentarily knocked unconscious after clashing with teammate Anthony Caci.

With Guilavogui stricken and motionless on the ground, referee Patrick Ittrich was quickly on hand to provide first aid, removing the player's tongue from his throat after the sickening collision, with a prognosis on the player's long-term condition not yet known.

With two midfielders potentially missing out, Henriksen will be glad to welcome back Leandro Barreiro Martins from suspension, while attacker Jessic Ngankam is also available after a ban of his own.

Bochum have been crippled by numerous injury issues of late, and just 45 minutes into his return last week, Tim Oermann suffered a recurrence of a hamstring issue and was forced off.

Momo Kwarteng has already been ruled out for the season with a knee injury, and the same problem will also see Matus Bero miss this clash.

Wide players Danilo Soares and Christopher Antwi-Adjei are two further names on the absentee list, with the pair suffering from muscular injuries at present.

Mainz 05 possible starting lineup:
Zentner; Van den Berg, Fernandes, Caci; Widmer, Barreiro Martins, Krauss, Mwene; Gruda, Burkardt, Lee

VfL Bochum possible starting lineup:
Riemann; Loosli, Ordets, Schlotterbeck, Bernardo; Asano, Daschner, Lossila, Stoger, Wittek; Broschinski


SM words green background

We say: Mainz 05 2-2 VfL Bochum

Recent form suggests Bochum will not be able to move towards the top half in the closing stages of the season, but maintaining the current healthy gap to the bottom three will do, and they should at least end their barren run here.

Mainz may be resigned to a bottom three finish after last week's damaging defeat, but catching Koln in 16th could give them a reprieve in the playoff, and that will likely be the target now.


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


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Game History

How you voted: Mainz vs VfL Bochum

Mainz 05
43.8%
Draw
40.6%
VfL Bochum
15.6%
32
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TeamPWDLFAGDPTS
1Bayer LeverkusenB. Leverkusen00000000
2Borussia DortmundDortmund00000000
3Borussia MonchengladbachBorussia M'bach00000000
4Eintracht FrankfurtFrankfurt00000000
5Augsburg00000000
6Bayern MunichBayern00000000
7Union BerlinUnion Berlin00000000
8Mainz 05Mainz00000000
9Heidenheim00000000
10Holstein Kiel00000000
11RB Leipzig00000000
12Freiburg00000000
13St Pauli00000000
14Hoffenheim00000000
15Stuttgart00000000
16VfL BochumVfL Bochum00000000
17Wolfsburg00000000
18Werder Bremen00000000


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