bundesliga

Jean-Philippe Mateta and Timo Werner on target as Mainz and RB Leipzig play out six-goal thriller

Mainz and RB Leipzig kicked off Matchday 32 in spectacular fashion, sharing six goals in a thrilling contest at the Opel Arena.

Mainz 3-3 RB Leipzig
Goals: 0-1
Klostermann (20’), 0-2 Klostermann (32’), 1-2 Onisiwo (43’), 1-3 Werner (49’), 2-3 Niakhate (67’), 3-3 Mateta (83')

Mainz gave as good as they got in the early stages as Alexander Hack rose unmarked at the back post to head a Daniel Brosinski free-kick wide. No one lands sucker punches quite like Leipzig in transition, though, and when Timo Werner skipped clear of the Mainz defence, the Germany international selflessly squared the ball across the six-yard box for Lukas Klostermann to tap home. The duo combined once more as Klostermann clipped a fine close-range chip over Florian Müller 12 minutes later, but Karim Onisiwo gave Mainz hope with a fine finish on the turn towards the end of a competitive first half.

Leipzig restored their two-goal lead soon after the restart, however. Yussuf Poulsen fed Emil Forsberg in the box, who held off his marker to tee up Werner for his 50th Bundesliga goal in a Leipzig shirt - but Mainz refused to throw in the towel. Brosinski flashed a warning shot wide, before Moussa Niakhate was allowed to bring Aaron Martin's corner under wraps and slam in to reduce the arrears once more. Mainz deservedly levelled through substitute striker Mateta, setting up a grandstand finale in which Klostermann, Poulsen and Willi Orban might have won it for Leipzig, who are now unbeaten in their last 14 Bundesliga matches.

Timo Werner had a hand in all three of Leipzig's goals. - imago images / Jan Huebner

Match stats

  • Mateta has scored more debut season goals (13) than any other Frenchman in Bundesliga history. The 05ers are unbeaten in all 10 games in which the France U21 international has scored this term (W7, D3).
  • Leipzig had won their last seven away matches. Until the draw, they were the only team across Europe's top five leagues to have a 100 per cent winning record away from home in 2019.
  • This was Leipzig's 100th Bundesliga match (W54, D23, L23) and takes their points total to 185 - the second-best points return from a Bundesliga club's first century of games after founding members Cologne (186).
  • Werner is on 16 Bundesliga goals for the season. He scored 13 in 2017/18.
  • Niakhate scored his first Bundesliga goal on his 31st appearance.
  • Klostermann grabbed his first career brace.

Line-ups

Mainz: Müller - Brosinski (c), Hack, Niakhate, Martin - Baku (Kunde 67') Gbamin (Maxim 79'), Latza - Boetius - Quaison, Onisiwo (Mateta 46')
Unused subs: Zentner, Bungert, Öztunali, Ujah
Out: Donati (knock)
Coach: Sandro Schwarz

Leipzig: Gulacsi - Mukiele, Orban (c), Konate - Klostermann, Laimer (Haidara 70'), Kampl, Halstenberg - Forsberg - Poulsen (Cunha 90'), Werner
Unused subs: Müller, Saracchi, Ilsanker, Bruma, Demme
Out: Adams (groin), Mvogo (knee), Sabitzer (rested), Smith Rowe (groin), Upamecano (knee)
Coach: Ralf Rangnick

Watch: Poulsen: "We can still beat Bayern"