Andrej Kramaric missed a penalty, but made amends acrobatically to help Hoffenheim to a 4-1 win over 10-man Mainz.
Hoffenheim 4-1 Mainz
Goals: 1-0 Kramaric 52’ (assist Rutter). 2-0 Prömel 69’ (assist: Baumgartner), 3-0 Dabbur 80‘ (assist: Angelino), 3-1 Kohr (83’), 4-1 Kaderabek 90‘+1 (assist: Stiller)
Red card: Hack (41’)
A good start was made by Mainz, whose captain Silvain Widmer was denied a goal after just three minutes with Oliver Baumann called into action. Jonathan Burkardt also went close as the guests seized the initiative, but his and their momentum was halted due to an injury which saw the Germany U21 international make way for Delano Burgzorg. Hoffenheim tried to make some inroads with David Raum’s teasing low cross going agonisingly across the face of goal without a blue shirt close enough to capitalise. The Germany defender opted to cut the ball back on his next foray forward, and Christoph Baumgartner’s deflected shot only just missed the left-hand post. Baumgartner squandered Hoffenheim’s next chance when he headed Kramaric’s cross over. Alexander Hack paid the ultimate price for hauling down Georginio Rutter, and a VAR review saw the referee revise his initial decision to give a free-kick and, instead, point to the penalty spot. Kramaric failed to compound Mainz’s woes, though, as he dragged the penalty wide – his second miss from the spot this season.
A Baumgartner header was Hoffenheim’s first effort within 30 seconds of the restart, and it was a sign of things to come. It took the hosts just over six minutes to break the deadlock against the 10 men of Mainz with Rutter carving out the opportunity and lifting a cross to the far post which Kramaric acrobatically converted. Pavel Kaderabek headed in Hoffenheim’s next effort, before Mainz wasted a glorious opportunity to level. Karim Onisiwo was sent clean through on goal, but he could not carry the ball forward quickly enough and, as the Hoffenheim defence retreated, he looked for a pass rather than to shoot. It was a let-off for Hoffenheim and one they learned from immediately, with Kaderabek’s cross touched back delightfully by Baumgartner for Prömel to drive into the bottom corner. The pressure now relieved, Hoffenheim played with much more confidence, and that could be seen in the cheeky backheel that Munas Dabbur provided to turn an Angelino shot in for the hosts’ third of the game. Dominik Kohr grabbed a consolation for the 05ers, with a low shot from the edge of the area, but it was merely cosmetic as Hoffenheim restored their three-goal lead late on with Kaderabek capping an excellent personal performance with the fourth.
- Hack saw his second red card of 2022, after Matchday 18 last season against Leipzig, having not been dismissed in his first six years in the Bundesliga.
- Kramaric missed his second penalty this season, squandering two in a row for the first time in his career.
- Prömel’s goal was his first in a Hoffenheim shirt.
- Hoffenheim have won their first three home games of the season for the first time ever.
- Only once did the Sinsheimers have more than 12 points after the first six games of the season: 15 in 2017/18.
- Mainz lost away from home for the first time after winning their last four on their travels.
Hoffenheim: Baumann (c) - Kabak, Vogt, Akpoguma (Nsoki 46') - Kaderabek, Geiger (Rudy 70'), Skov (Angelino 75') - Prömel, Baumgartner (Stiller 84') - Kramaric (Dabbur 70'), Rutter
Unused subs: Philipp, Samassekou, Damar, Bruun Larsen
Out: Bebou (knee), Bicakcic (knee), Hübner (ankle), Pentke (elbow)
Coach: Andre Breitenreiter
Mainz: Zentner - Bell, Hack, Leitsch - Widmer (c), Kohr, Barreiro (Fernandes 64'), Aaron (Caci 75') - Fulgini (Lee 64') - Burkardt (Burgzorg 14', Tauer 46'), Onisiwo
Unused subs: Dahmen, da Costa, Barkok, Mustapha
Out: Ingvartsen (knee), Stach (hip)
Coach: Bo Svensson
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