Europe-chasing 1. FSV Mainz 05 welcome survival hopefuls SV Darmstadt 98 to the Coface Arena on Saturday afternoon (kick-off 15:30CET/14:30GMT).
Mainz put a cat among the Bundesliga pigeons in midweek by becoming the first side to beat FC Bayern München at the Allianz Arena this term. That win not only opened the title race up, but boosted Mainz's own hopes of qualifying for Europe next season by strengthening their grip on a place inside the top six.
Darmstadt's defeat at home to Borussia Dortmund provided the other midweek talking point in the context of the title race, but their coach Dirk Schuster had little to smile about with his side sliding towards the bottom three.
Mainz saw a 2-0 lead wiped out by Darmstadt, but still came through to defeat their neighbours 3-2 to kick off Matchday 8 in enthralling fashion.
Matchday 25 - Match facts
- Mainz have won five of their last six games, with only Borussia Dortmund faring any better in that time.
- Darmstadt have picked up just one point from their last four games and are in the worst form of any Bundesliga side over that period.
- The 05ers have beaten the likes of Bayern, Bayer 04 Leverkusen, FC Schalke 04 and Borussia Mönchengladbach in 2016.
- For their part, though, the Lilies have accumulated 18 of their 25 points away from home, with only Bayern and Dortmund picking up more on their travels.
- Dirk Schuster's side have not won any of their last eight home games – their last four wins have all come on the road.
- Martin Schmidt's side have needed an average of just six shots to score a goal in their last six games.
- Furthermore, Mainz have picked up 16 out of a possible 18 points in their last six home games.
- Darmstadt have scored twice as many goals away from home (17) as they have in front of their own fans (eight).
- The Hessian club have scored ten of their 12 goals from set-pieces away from home, with captain and centre-half Aytac Sulu scoring six.
- Mainz run more than any other side in the Bundesliga on average (118.7km per game), with Darmstadt making the fewest sprints (175 per game).
Mainz: Karius - Donati, Balogun, Bungert, Brosinski - Baumgartlinger, Latza - De Blasis, Malli, Jairo - Cordoba
Absentees: Bell (knee), Bengtsson (ankle), Soto (light training), Berggreen (knee), Muto (ankle)
Darmstadt: Mathenia - Jungwirth, Sulu, Rajkovic, Caldirola - Niemeyer, Gondorf - Heller, Vrancic, Kempe - Wagner
Absentees: Garics (knee)