Mainz - Borussia Dortmund ended a run of four games without a victory courtesy of a hard-fought 2-0 win away to 1. FSV Mainz 05.
Goals: 1-0 Reus (17’), 2-0 Mkhitaryan (82’)
All eyes were on former Mainz head coach Thomas Tuchel in the build-up to the game, but attentions soon shifted to matters on the pitch. The 05ers made an enterprising start as Yoshinori Muto’s close-range flick called Roman Bürki into action, only for the game to swing in BVB’s favour in the 17th minute. Niko Bungert’s careless pass out from the back gifted possession to Henrikh Mkhitaryan, who combined with Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang to tee up Marco Reus for his first goal since August. Jairo Samperio went close to equalising with a devilish free kick that grazed the crossbar as Mainz found themselves behind at half time for the first time this season.
Dortmund had the chance to double their lead early in the second half when Danny Latza upended Aubameyang in the box. Reus stepped up to take the ensuing penalty, but Loris Karius got down well to make the save. Bürki foiled Muto as Mainz went in search of the equaliser, before another defensive error wrapped up the win for BVB. Aubameyang could have gone it alone after collecting Daniel Brosinski’s misplaced pass, but instead squared for Mkhitaryan to give Tuchel the points on his first outing in Mainz since leaving the club in May 2014.
Man of the match
Bürki came in for some heavy criticism after the 5-1 defeat to FC Bayern München on Matchday 8, but the Switzerland international made some crucial saves in both halves.
Despite the result, Mainz fans will have been encouraged by their side’s display. Martin Schmidt has got the 05ers pressing hard and creating chances, leading to inevitable comparisons with his former mentor Tuchel.
- Reus has now opened the scoring for Dortmund on 26 occasions.
- The last four penalties against Karius have been missed.
- Dortmund had only missed one of their 17 previous penalties in the Bundesliga: Ciro Immobile against Karius last season.
Line-ups and statistics:
Mainz: Karius - Brosinski, Bungert, Bell, Bengtsson - Baumgartlinger, Latza (Serdar 85’) - Jairo (Klement 70’), Malli, De Blasis - Muto (Niederlechner 84’)
Dortmund: Bürki - Ginter, Sokratis, Hummels, Park - Weigl, Gündogan - Kagawa (Castro 84’), Mkhitaryan, Reus - Aubameyang (Ramos 89’)