Manuel Veth –
Mainz vs Bayern Munich – Saturday, February 1, 14:30GMT/15:30CET – Opel Arena, Mainz, Germany
Mainz managed to bring one last signing across the line. Defender Jeffrey Bruma joined the club on Thursday in a loan deal from Wolfsburg. Whether the Dutch defender will start is an entirely different matter.
It is more likely that head coach Achim Beierlorzer will use his usual backline against the Rekordmeister. Mainz have struggled a bit and lost the last three games. Not the best scenario to face Bayern Munich, not that it matters much whether you are in form or not when you face the record champions.
“Schalke went there with a lot of confidence and conceded five goals,” Beierlorzer pointed out on Friday. “It is a bonus game. It would be sensational to win the game but not the end of the world if we lose”
It is the sort of statement that frustrates many Bundesliga observers. But in Bayern’s current form it is also the truth, the Rekordmeister has been fantastic under Hansi Flick in recent matches and looks poised to win an eighth title in a row.
As a result, Flick was no longer worried about the lack of Bayern signings in the winter transfer window. “I am really happy with the squad,” Flick said. “The injured people are returning. The team has quality, you could see that in our last two games.”
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Lucas Hernández and Kingsley Coman have once again trained and could be ready for Mainz. Both, however, will have to work hard to make into the squad. The emergence of Alphonso Davies, in particular, will make it difficult for Hernández to receive playing time.
Flick, however, enjoys the options. Bayern’s players are in fact coming back just in time for the difficult tasks facing the club in the spring-time.
Mainz vs Bayern Munich – Players to look out for:
Karim Onisiwo #21 – 1.FSV Mainz
The 27-year-old Austrian forward Karim Onisiwo will be one to watch against Bayern Munich on Saturday. A fast striker, Onisiwo will likely find himself matched up with either Benjamin Pavard or Alphonso Davies. Either way a stern challenge.
Leon Goretzka #18 – Bayern Munich
Leon Goretzka has been in sensational form lately and appears to finally arrive at Bayern. “Leon played very well against Schalke,” Flick said. “He has enormous qualities and is very strong box-to-box. I really like that he strengthens our defensive game. He’s an important and good player.”
Mainz vs Bayern Munich – Match Stats
- Bayern have won the last five games and have scored 18 goals more than the opponents.
- The last time Bayern managed this was last spring, it also included a 6-0 win over Mainz.
- Mainz’s home record against Bayern Munich: W2 D1 L10
Futbolgrad Network Prediction: Mainz vs Bayern Munich – 1-3
Mainz vs Bayern Munich – Lineup
Zentner – Baku, Niakhate, Hack, Brosinski – Kunde, St. Juste, Boëtius – Onisiwo, Mateta, Quaison
Head Coach: Achim Beierlorzer
Neuer – Davies, Alaba, Boateng, Pavard – Goretzka, Kimmich, Thiago – Perišić, Lewandowski, Müller
Head Coach: Hansi Flick
Manuel Veth is the owner and Editor in Chief of the Futbolgrad Network. He is the Area Manager USA for Transfermarkt and contributes to Forbes.com. He holds a Doctorate of Philosophy in History from King’s College London, and his thesis is titled: “Selling the People’s Game: Football’s transition from Communism to Capitalism in the Soviet Union and its Successor States,” which is available HERE. Manuel has lived in Amsterdam, Kyiv, Moscow, Tbilisi, London, and currently splits his time between Victoria, BC, and Munich, Germany. Follow Manuel on Twitter @ManuelVeth.