Pellegrino Matarazzo on…
… Mainz 05: “Mainz are a team that have started the second half of the season very well. They will be full of confidence. They are all about intense pressing and good transitions in both directions. They are statistically one of the best high-pressing teams in the league.”
… the match against Mainz: “We have to be able to play the game in their half. We need to understand the depth and see the spaces available to us. We need to be ready to defend their counter-attacks and have to match the physicality of the Mainz players. That will be very important.”
… lessons from the BVB game: “Against Dortmund, we saw a level of intensity and courage that has to become the standard for us. With this attitude, you will always be competitive. But we need to make better use of the chances we had.”
… game time for the young players: “I don’t look at ages, I look at performances. The guys who work well with each other and put in performances will play for me.”
… the focus of the players in the current situation: “I get the feeling that the lads are all on board. Looking at the training sessions from the past two days, I saw a remarkable level of intensity. The willingness and commitment are right.”
… possible changes in the relegation battle: “I am not superstitious, I’m solution-oriented. We don’t want to do anything different, we just want to do things better. If we improve our own game, we are more likely to get the three points.”
The personnel situation:
Jacob Bruun Larsen, Grischa Prömel and Justin Che are still out injured. Tom Bischof is still doubtful, Angelo Stiller unfortunately has sustained a bruised pelvis, and his availability is also uncertain. Ihlas Bebou, too, is questionable after a blow to his knee. Angeliño is scheduled to return to training today after a thigh problem. Robert Skov, Thomas Delaney, Dennis Geiger, Stanley Nsoki and Ozan Kabak have overcome their injuries and illnesses and are back available for selection against Mainz.
Of the 27 matches between the two sides in the Bundesliga to date, TSG have won 8, Mainz were victorious in 12, with the points shared in the other 7 games. In the first half of this season, Hoffenheim turned on the style in the second half and won 4-1, having gone into the changing rooms goalless at half time.
The opposition’s form:
Mainz have started the second half of the season very well, winning four of their five games. In their last games at the Mewa Arena, FSV have beaten Bochum (5-2), Augsburg (3-1) and Mönchengladbach (4-0).