- Kessler makes several crucial saves for Köln.
- Clemens faces former club on second Köln debut.
- Mainz fail to score for first time at home this season.
Levin Öztunali stung the palms of Thomas Kessler with the first shot of the game, before Jairo Samperio gave the Köln custodian some more work to do two days after his 21st birthday. Köln attempted to take some of the sting out of their hosts by slowing the tempo of the game and safeguarding possession, while their vociferous fans did not even pause for breath as they roared their team on. Mainz's Danny Latza then flashed a volley wide just before the teams headed for a strategy rethink.
Kessler continued to thwart Mainz's advances early in the second half with notable saves from Pablo De Blasis, before the guests grew in confidence and looked to step up their attacking efforts. Jonas Lössl had little to do in the Mainz goal, however, and neither side could find the craft or creativity to forge a winner, with the spoils shared and Köln drawing for the fourth game in a row.
Man of the match
Timo Horn's return from injury is on the horizon, but in the meantime Kessler is doing all he can to give his coach a selection headache when the designated no.1 returns. Excellent saves early in either half helped secure his team a point.
The Opel Arena fans failed to witness at least one goal for the first time this season, with Mainz registering only their second goalless draw. Köln have obtained that result three times this season now with only TSG 1899 Hoffenheim drawing more frequently (ten times to Köln's eight).
- This was the first league match that Yunus Malli (who signed for VfL Wolfsburg this month) missed for Mainz since October 2014 – a run of 86 consecutive appearances.
- Mainz has been the venue for the most goals this season, with 32 in the eight games so far at an average of four per game.
- Clemens' second Köln debut came at the club where he was playing until December – it was his first Köln appearance since May 2013.
Mainz: Lössl - Brosinski, Bell, Bungert (c), Bussmann – Frei, Latza - Öztunali, Samperio (Bouziane 77') - Muto (Gbamin 89'), De Blasis
Coach: Martin Schmidt
Köln: Kessler - Sörensen, Maroh, Heintz - Olkowski, Rausch - Höger, Hector (c) – Clemens (Bittencourt 74'), Osako – Modeste
Coach: Peter Stöger