Jean-Philippe Mateta's brace was not enough for struggling Mainz, as goals from Lars Stindl, Jonas Hofmann and Matthias Ginter earned Borussia Mönchengladbach the points in a 3-2 win.
Gladbach took the lead when Stindl turned in a neat knock-down from Breel Embolo from close range. Rock-bottom Mainz could have been forgiven for fearing the worst, but when Mateta teed up Jean-Paul Boetius for a golden opportunity to equalise soon after – though he placed a weak shot straight at Yann Sommer – their heads were lifted. Mateta brought them level with their next opportunity, converting the rebound after Robin Quaison hit the post, and while Patrick Herrmann sent a sweet volley onto the top of the crossbar, it was the hosts who struck next. Mateta managed to hold off four defenders before turning and driving a low shot into the bottom corner of Sommer's goal. Robin Zentner then preserved Mainz's lead until the break, most notably from another Herrmann effort.
Zentner was given some early work to do in the second half too, turning away Herrmann's shot before Moussa Niakhate covered behind him to clear Embolo's shot on the rebound off the line. Gladbach coach Marco Rose reacted by making four substitutions, with Marcus Thuram and Alassane Plea both sent on, and the tactical tinkering eventually paid off with Thuram earning a penalty when his shot was handled by Niakhate. Fellow substitute Hofmann sent Zentner the wrong way from the spot, and the speed with which he fished the ball out of the back of the net emphasised how keen Gladbach were on getting more than just a point. And the guests grabbed the win thanks to a flying header from Ginter seven minutes from time, leaving Mainz rooted to the foot of the table with five straight defeats.
- Jan-Moritz Lichte becomes the first Mainz coach to lose his first three games in charge.
- Mateta scored his third Bundesliga brace. His last two steered Mainz to victories (5-0 vs. Freiburg, 3-1 vs. Fortuna Düsseldorf).
- Mateta is already on three goals for the season – his total from the whole of 2019/20 (18 appearances).
- Rocco Reitz made his Gladbach debut, aged 18 years and 148 days.
- Quaison made his 100th Bundesliga appearance. He opened the scoring in both meetings with Gladbach last season, though Mainz went on to lose 3-1 on each occasion.
- Indeed, Gladbach are now unbeaten in nine meetings with Mainz, winning their last five in a row.
Watch: Hofmann: “We showed a good reaction in the second half”
Mainz: Zentner - St. Juste, Kilian, Niakhate, Brosinski - Kunde (Leandro Barreiro 65'), Latza (c) (Ji 82') - Öztunali (Edimilson Fernandes 65'), Boetius, Quaison (Burkhardt 68') - Mateta
Unused subs: Dahmen, Stöger, Mwene, Nebel, Hack
Coach: Jan-Moritz Lichte
Gladbach: Sommer - Lainer, Ginter, Elvedi, Wendt - Kramer (Neuhaus 60'), Jantschke (Plea 54') - Herrmann, Stindl (c) (Thuram 53'), Reitz (Hofmann 60') – Embolo (Wolf 72')
Unused subs: Sippel, Lang, Traore, Bensebaini
Out: Benes (ankle), Beyer (match fitness), Doucoure (match fitness), Lazaro (match fitness) Poulsen (shoulder), Zakaria (knee)
Coach: Marco Rose