1. FSV Mainz 05 need three points just as much as FC Augsburg on Saturday (kick-off 15:30CEST/13:30GMT), albeit for vastly different reasons.
Despite going three games without a win, Mainz are still only three points outside the coveted UEFA Champions League places. They could rise as high as fifth this weekend, or drop as low as eighth.
At the opposite end of the spectrum, meanwhile, Augsburg are involved in their own neck-and-neck race for survival. Locked on the same number of points as Eintracht Frankfurt and TSG 1899 Hoffenheim, only goal difference is keeping Die Fuggerstädter out of the relegation zone following a five-match winless run.
Augsburg hit back from 2-0 down to take a 3-2 lead in a thrilling contest at the WWK Arena, but Japan international Yoshinori Muto struck at the last to complete a stunning hat-trick and earn Mainz a deserved share of the spoils.
Matchday 28 - match stats
- Mainz already have more points on the board after 27 matches (41) than they accumulated over the entire course of last season (40).
- Mainz are winless in their last three. They have not gone four games without victory since Martin Schmidt took charge.
- Augsburg have won only one of their ten Rückrunde matches and are winless in their last five.
- Augsburg head coach Markus Weinzierl has overseen more wins against FC Bayern München and Borussia Muonchengladbach than he has against Mainz (one win in seven).
- The two sides have never played out a goalless draw in nine previous meetings in the Bundesliga.
- Augsburg have given away 19 points after taking the lead in matches, compared to just two last season.
- Alfred Finnbogason has scored three goals in his last five games, but Augsburg have never won when the Icelander has been on target.
- Mainz midfielder Julian Baumgartlinger did not score in his first 111 Bundesliga appearances, but has netted two in his last seven.
Mainz: Karius – Brosinski, Balogun, Bell, Bussmann – Baumgartlinger (c), Frei – Clemens, Malli, Serdar - Cordoba
Absentees: Jairo (suspended), Berggreen (knee), Donati (suspended) Soto (knee), Muto (knee), Klement (light training)
Augsburg: Hitz - Stafylidis, Klavan, Gouweleeuw, Max - Baier (c), Kohr - Esswein, Koo, Caiuby - Finnbogason
Absentees: Callsen-Bracker (shin), Verhaegh (muscular)