Shinji Okazaki's first-ever Bundesliga brace helped 1. FSV Mainz 05 to a 2-0 win over Eintracht Braunschweig.
Okazaki at the double
Mainz made it clear from the off they were intent on ending their run of six Bundesliga matches without a win, quickly settling into their rhythm at the Coface Arena. Okazaki made sure the home side's early efforts paid dividends after only eight minutes, doing extremely well in lobbing Junior Diaz's long ball over Daniel Davari in goal.
Okazaki, newly-signed from VfB Stuttgart in the summer, was the initiator of most of Mainz's promising action, and the Japanese forward came close to adding a second for Mainz near the half-hour mark when he saw his diving header saved by Davari. Cellar-dwellers Braunschweig were never going to give in, however, as Karim Bellarabi fired off a first warning just before the break.
It took Mainz a while to find a way through the deep-lying visitors' defence in the second half, who came close to levelling matters against the run of play when Bellarabi tested Heinz Müller in goal. However, Okazaki soon doubled the home side's lead to put the game to bed, applying the finishing touches on a high-tempo counter-attack.
Braunschweig threw bodies forward in the final stages with half-time substitute Domi Kumbela going extremely close twice, but it was too little, too late for the promoted outfit from Lower Saxony, who remain bottom of the table.
Line-ups and statistics