Schalke recorded back-to-back wins for just the second time this season after overcoming Mainz 1-0 away on Sunday afternoon.
Mainz 0-1 Schalke
Goals: 0-1 Kolasinac (50')
The first half was a fiercely contested encounter at the Opel Arena, with both teams eager to strike first blood in an effort to increase the distance between themselves the relegation zone. Yet although Schalke had more of the ball they failed to seriously trouble the Mainz defence, while the better chances fell to the hosts, who were denied on several occasions by Ralf Fährmann in a goalless first 45 minutes.
The breakthrough eventually came early in the second half when Sead Kolasinac played a neat one-two on the edge of the box with Guido Burgstaller before coolly slotting past Jonas Lössl. Mainz brought on attackers Pablo De Blasis and Yoshinori Muto in response as they looked to salvage something from the game, but the visitors went closest to scoring again, only for substitute Nabil Bentaleb to miss when put through one-on-one late on. It ultimately mattered little, however, as Schalke held on for all three points.
Man of the match
Fährmann was outstanding in goal for Schalke. The 28-year-old was a commanding presence in his penalty area and played a big part in his side's win by making a number of good saves.
Given how composed Schalke's display was here it is remarkable that this was just their second away win of the season – only bottom club Darmstadt had a worse record on the road going into this game.
- Mainz's Daniel Brosinski made his 100th Bundesliga appearance in this match.Referee Wolfgang Stark took charge of his 339th Bundesliga match – a new league record.Kolasinac has now scored three times this season, having previously only found the net once in his Bundesliga career.
Mainz: Lössl – Donati, Bungert (c), Ramahlo, Brosinski – Gbamin, Latzka (Muto 82') – Öztunali, Krkic (Quaison 61'), Samperio (De Blasis 61') - Cordoba
Coach: Martin Schmidt
Schalke: Fährmann – Kehrer, Höwedes (c), Badstuber, Kolasinac – Goretzka (Bentaleb 46'), Stambouli – Schöpf, Meyer (Caligiuri 62'), Choupo-Moting - Burgstaller (Di Santo 83')
Coach: Markus Weinzierl
Watch: Sead Kolasinac delighted to break the Mainz net!