Mainz 05 breathes a sigh of relief after a work win: “500 duels”

“For what?” Shortly before the end, Bo Svensson shouted outraged at referee Frank Willenborg, who had shown him the yellow card, echoing in the main stand.

Afterwards there were even more important things for the Dane than the dubious honor of being the first coach in the Bundesliga to be suspended for a game after his fourth warning.

The joy over the 1-0 (0-0) of FSV Mainz against VfL Bochum “predominates”, said Svensson. Already on Tuesday there is a new edition of the duel between the two teams, which threw themselves into every ball and opponent over 90 minutes in the style of two relegation candidates.

See you in the cup

In the DFB Cup round of 16 in Bochum, Svensson will still sit on the Rheinhessen bench as usual for a year, on Saturday in the game against SpVgg Greuther Fürth he is banished to the stands.

Since the 2019/20 season, yellow cards can also be given to coaches – four warnings automatically result in a game suspension. Svensson saw a misunderstanding in the warning from Willenborg after a dispute with Bochumer Bank, but also said: “That’s no excuse. It’s not a yellow card, it’s four – that’s not ideal.”

However, it was crucial for the 42-year-old that his team from Mainz secured their third home win without conceding a goal in the middle of the table. “We’re just happy to have won a very, very close game. We’re happy to get the three points in a very difficult game,” said Svensson.

Mainz match winner

The two match winners, Robin Zentner and Jeremiah St. Juste, hugged each other in the cabin aisle and hit each other on the back so that it cracked. The keeper saved a penalty kick from Sebastian Polter in the 32nd minute.

The defender, who made a surprising return and underwent shoulder surgery at the end of October, scored the goal of the day in the 48th minute. “It’s been a tough few months, but today is an incredible feeling,” said Dutchman St. Juste.

“We now have to wipe our mouths and learn from things. On Tuesday in the cup, I expect a similar fight with a close result,” said Bochum head coach Thomas Reis.

In the rough game in front of only 1000 allowed spectators, the press and liberation shots echoed again and again through the almost empty stadium. FSV central defender Stefan Bell said afterwards that there were “probably 500 duels”.

Dispute of penalty shooters

Bochum’s top scorer Polter and his colleague Milos Pantovic, who has already excelled as an art shooter this season, then also argued about taking the penalty kick.

“I want to score goals. A penalty kick is the quickest shot on goal,” said Polter after his faux pas against Zentner. Pantovic had previously explained in front of the “Sky” camera that he had been assigned as a shooter and later said: “It wasn’t clearly defined, I would have liked to have shot.” Polter explained it like this: “He gave in after a short back and forth.”

Coach Reis took it with composure – and humor. “I’m glad we have a lot of responsible footballers. Maybe we need more penalties on Tuesday.”


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