Sebastien Haller and Gio Reyna came off the bench to combine for a late winner as Borussia Dortmund took all three points from a 2-1 triumph in Mainz.
Mainz clearly did their homework on Dortmund following BVB's frenetic 4-3 win over Augsburg on Sunday, aware that their backline is vulnerable if put under pressure. But even head coach Bo Svensson cannot have expected his plan to bear fruit quite so quickly: Jae-sung Lee headed the hosts in front from a corner inside two minutes. To their credit, Edin Terzic's charges responded immediately and Ryerson – who was beaten in the air by Lee for the opening goal – made amends with a deflected drive from outside the box to equalise. Youssoufa Moukoko could have completed the turnaround moments later when free inside the box, but he fired wide with Karim Adeyemi unmarked in the middle. The intensity of the game waned thereafter, with a Donyell Malen shot from the edge of the box that was comfortably saved by Finn Dahmen as close as either side went to adding to the scoreline.
Having been nine points behind Bayern Munich over the winter break, Dortmund had the chance to reduce the gap to just five points following the Bundesliga leaders' back-to-back draws this year. Yet Mainz were in no mood to simply comply. While Karim Adeyemi had a couple of wayward shots for the visitors, Mainz looked the more dangerous side and went close through Karim Onisiwo and Marcus Ingvartsen, who narrowly missed the target. Terzic responded with a triple substitution, bringing on Sebastien Haller, Gio Reyna and Jamie Bynoe-Gittens to reinvigorate his team's attacks, but it was Mainz who remained the more threatening of the two: Angelo Fulgini should have done better than to curl a shot straight at Gregor Kobel before Aymen Barkok's piercing volley fizzed wide. Just as the match appeared destined for a draw, however, Haller flicked on a corner for Reyna to poke in at the back post and snatch a last-gasp win for the visitors.
- Niklas Süle wore the captain's armband in a Bundesliga game for the first time ever here.
- Three of Lee's seven Bundesliga goals have been headers.
- Mainz have now found the net four times from corners this season.
- Ryerson's goal was his first for Dortmund since joining from Union Berlin, and his third overall in 81 Bundesliga outings.
- Mainz haven't beaten BVB at home since 20 September 2014 (D1, L6).
- Haller's assist was his first direct goal involvement for Dortmund in a competitive game.
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Watch: Terzic: "Haller had a fantastic role today"
Mainz: Dahmen – Fernandes, Hanche-Olsen, Caci (Hack 80') – Widmer (c), Barreiro, Barkok (Gruda 89), Martin – Lee (Stach 63') – Onisiwo (Ajorque 80'), Ingvartsen (Fulgini 63')
Unused subs: Riess, Leitsch, Bell, Da Costa
Out: Burgzorg (ankle), Burkardt (knee), Kohr (suspended), Mustapha (operation), Zentner (back)
Coach: Bo Svensson
Dortmund: Kobel – Ryerson, Süle (c), Schlotterbeck, Guerreiro – Can (Reyna 62'), Özcan – Adeyemi (Wolf 77'), Brandt (Hummels 90'+4), Malen (Bynoe-Gittens 62') – Moukoko (Haller 62')
Unused subs: Meyer, Dahoud, Modeste, Passlack,
Out: Bellingham (suspended), Kamara (knee), Meunier (muscular), Morey (match fitness), Reus (match fitness)
Coach: Edin Terzic
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