High-flying Hertha Berlin failed to find the net for the first time this season in a 0-0 draw away to a resilient Mainz side on Saturday.
Mainz 0-0 Hertha Berlin
Hertha may have handed Bayern Munich their first defeat of the season last week, but if Mainz were impressed by that they certainly didn't show it. The hosts began boldly, pressing high up the pitch and pinning their guests back into their own half. However, it soon became clear why they had only scored four goals all season prior to this match, with the final ball often too loose to do any damage. Jean-Philippe Gbamin went closest for Mainz from 10 yards, while at the other end Vedad Ibisevic had Hertha's best chance but hit the post with header.
Hertha were better after the break and soon fashioned two openings for themselves, with Ibisevic volleying narrowly wide from Valentin Lazaro's cross before Salomon Kalou fired over following a mazy run on the edge of the box. Mainz also had clearer sightings of goal as the match wore on, but Jean Philippe Mateta and Gbamin couldn't apply the finishing touches to neat build-up play, leaving the teams to settle for a point at the final whistle.
Mainz: Zentner – Mwene, Bell (c), Niakhate, Martin – Kunde, Gbamin (Maxim 88'), Baku – Boëtius, Mateta (Issah 82'), Burkardt (Ujah 66')
Unused subs: Huth, Donati, Onisiwo, Bussmann
Absentees: Adler, Berggreen (both knee), Holtmann (Achilles)
Coach: Sandro Schwarz
Hertha: Jarstein – Lazaro, Stark (Lustenberger 46'), Rekik, Plattenhardt – Maier, Skjelbred – Kalou, Duda, Dilrosun (Leckie 74') – Ibisevic (c) (Selke 61')
Unused subs: Kraft, Mittelstädt, Palk. Dardai, Jastrzembski
Absentees: Gersbeck (cruciate ligament), Torunarigha (Achilles), Grujic (ankle)
Coach: Pal Dardai
- The average age of Mainz's starting XI in this game was just 22.78 years - their youngest ever in the Bundesliga.Mainz have now kept three clean sheets in their four home games this season.Issah Abass made his Bundesliga debut for Mainz in this game. Hertha's Ondrej Duda currently leads the Bundesliga scoring charts with five goals, one more than the entire Mainz team. All 16 goals scored by the two clubs in the Bundesliga this season have been the work of non-German players.Mainz have the Bundesliga's worst attack with just four goals scored, yet they also boast its best defence, with only four goals conceded.The 05ers have now set an unwanted club record of four Bundesliga games without scoring.