Mainz bring carnival to Leverkusen as 05ers stun Xabi Alonso's vanquished hosts


Marcus Ingvartsen struck a winning penalty inside the final 10 minutes as Mainz earned a dramatic victory against the 10 men of Bayer Leverkusen.

Leverkusen 2-3 Mainz
Goals: 0-1 
Caci (26'), 1-1 Amiri 32' (assist: Azmoun), 1-2 Barreiro 45'+4 (assist: Lee), 2-2 Schick 58', 2-3 Ingvartsen (pen.) 82'
Red Card: Adli 81'

A 3-2 home loss to Monaco in the Europa League in midweek tempered the morale boost Leverkusen gained with victory in Hoffenheim on Matchday 20. After 20 minutes of this contest, the hosts were offered the chance to take heart after Mainz's Anton Stach was adjudged to have fouled Sardar Azmoun inside the visiting box. The 05ers - buoyed by a win against Augsburg last time out - were not at the BayArena feeling charitable and they quickly delivered a double whammy that silenced the home fans. Finn Dahmen saved Edmond Tapsoba’s penalty at one end before Anthony Caci pounced on Odilon Kossounou’s attempted clearance to blast home at the other. Amine Adli’s spin and high finish brought parity before Mainz got themselves back into the lead with a tidy second. Watching a dropping ball into the area, Jae-Sung Lee chested for Leandro Barreiro who smashed home his first goal of the season. An ensuing overturned penalty decision prevented the visitors from possibly going into the break with a bigger lead.

Able to count on a bench filled with talent, Alonso introduced the likes of Jeremie Frimpong, Florian Wirtz and Patrik Schick and the changes helped to briefly turn the tide, with all three involved as Leverkusen drew level once more. Frimpong’s shot was helped onto the post by Dahmen before Azmoun’s follow up also lashed against the woodwork. The ball was then inadvertently helped into Schick’s path by Wirtz, allowing the Czech striker to power in the equaliser. A couple of world class Lukas Hradecky saves to deny Karim Onisiwo and then Lee kept Die Werkself in the hunt for maximum returns. However, that hard work was undone when Amine Adli chopped down Silvan Widmer in the box, the Bayer man seeing red for his troubles with Mainz taking full advantage through Ingvartsen's winning penalty kick.

Match stats

  • Schick scored his first goal in over five months and his third of the campaign.
  • Goalkeeper Finn Dahmen saved his first penalty having previously been beaten by three spot-kicks in the Bundesliga.
  • Caci scored his second of the season, his first coming in a 1-1 draw with Hertha Berlin on Matchday 7.
  • Amiri now has three Bundesliga goals -scored in his last seven games - this season; a personal best in a Leverkusen shirt.
  • Azmoun provided his first assist of the season.
  • Mainz scored two goals in the first half away from home for the first time since March 2021.
  • Lee has already beaten his total goal involvement for the entire 2021/22 campaign (six of his own, plus two assists).

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Leverkusen: Hradecky (c) - Kossounou (Frimpong 46'), Tapsoba, Tah, Sinkgraven (Wirtz 55') - Andrich, Demirbay (Hlozek 84'), Amiri (Schick 55') - Hudson-Odoi (Hincapie 46'), Azmoun, Adli
Unused subs: Pentz, Bakker, Mbamba, Palacios
Out: Aranguiz (calf), Diaby (muscular), Lunev (back)
Coach: Xabi Alonso

Mainz: Dahmen - Hanche-Olsen, Bell, Fernandes - Da Costa (Widmer 74'), Barreiro, Stach (Barkok 90'+5), Caci (Martin 74') - Lee (Kohr 64') - Onisiwo (c), Ajorque (Ingvarsten 64')
Unused subs: Zentner, Leitsch, Hack, Mustapha
Out: Burkardt (knee)
Coach: Bo Svensson