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Wolfsburg - Mainz 05

Germany: Bundesliga
Wolfsburg J. Wind (8), M. Kruse (Pen. 24), M. Kruse (35), J. Wind (42), M. Kruse (45)
VOLKSWAGEN ARENAFull time5-0
Mainz 05 N. Tauer (23)
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Wolfsburg pummel Mainz with Kruse hat trick and Wind brace

By Peter Vice

Just six days removed from a 1-6 rout at the hands of Dortmund, VfL Wolfsburg were able to engineer a rout of their own by defeating Mainz 05 5-0. Max Kruse earned a hat trick whilst Jonas Wind recorded a brace in the heavy defeat 

In 11th place on 37 points, Germany's green company team still can't technically clinch another season of Bundesliga football this weekend. Survival prospects are nevertheless looking good. 

Max Kruse.
Max Kruse.

The double whammy of a penalty and a straight red sunk visiting FSV Mainz 05 on Friday night at the Volkswagen Arena. Forced to play shorthanded for the majority of the match, the Rheinhessen quickly fell apart and conceded five first-half goals to their hosts.


VfL Wolfsburg head-coach Florian Kohfeldt--with Maxence Lacroix out injured--switched to a five-man back-line. Jerome Roussillon worked as the left-back opposite Ride Baku, who moved back. Maximilian Arnold also played deeper as a natural sweeper. Xaver Schlager and Yannick Gerhardt paired as sixes behind Max Kruse, Jonas Wind, and Lukas Nmecha in a 5-2-3. FSV Mainz trainer Bo Svennson went with a 3-5-2, rotating in Leandro Barreiro and Marcus Ingvartsen for Karim Onisiwo and Dominik Kohr.

After something of a cagey start characterized by errors, Baku and Roussillon began punching through on their respective sides after the five-minute-mark. Arnold released Baku right in the 7th and the German international sent in a fine cross that Nmecha inadvertently ended up redirecting to the feet of Wind. It proved a simple tap-in for the Danish striker and the home side went up 1-0.

Die Wölfe asserted attacking dominance over the next few minutes, though Mainz did get a good chance at the equalizer in the 15th. Jonathan Burkardt forced Koen Casteels into a highly skilled save after stripping the ball off Sebastiaan Bornauw. Apart from that play, Mainz were noticeably struggling in their attack builds. The Autostädter continued to press and were awarded a penalty in the 21st when Niklas Tauer hauled down Nmecha.

It went from bad to worse for the Pfälzer guests when match official Harm Osmers--after a VAR review--decided that Tauer's challenge was worthy of a straight red. Kruse converted the penalty in the 24th and Svensson's men had to play down 0-2 with a man disadvantage for a full 66 minutes. Kohfeldt's men kept knocking on the door, hoping to open the floodgates. Nmecha narrowly missed the 3-0 twice.

Finally, in the 35th, Kruse secured the next goal after some more great work from Arnold and Baku. Seven minutes after that, Wolfsburg had a 4-0 lead and two players on braces. Wind joined Kruse in grabbing a double when a failed clearance bounced back to him. The finish was nevertheless quite worthy.


Before the first-half was out, Kruse assured himself of a hat trick. The veteran striker finished off a Gerhardt cross at 45+2. The game lost, Svensson pulled the trigger on a quadruple change at the half. Wolfsburg weren't necessarily cordial about not attempting to run up the score even higher. The Pfälzer were still able to successfully mitigate the damage throughout most of the second 45.

Onisiwo missed a late chance for a consolation and Mainz were left to lament one of those 0-5 defeat that makes a mockery out of their namesake.


Wolfsburg
(4-3-3)
1K. Casteels (C)
20R. Baku ↪74
3S. Bornauw
25J. Brooks
15J. Roussillon
24X. Schlager ↪64
27M. Arnold
31Y. Gerhardt
23J. Wind ↪74
10L. Nmecha ↪64
9M. Kruse ↪81
Bench
12P. Pervan
17M. Philipp ↩74
21B. Bialek ↩64
28D. Lukebakio
19K. Mbabu ↩74
8A. Vranckx
11R. Steffen
22F. Nmecha ↩64
40K. Paredes ↩81
Mainz 05
(3-5-2)
27R. Zentner
25N. Tauer
16S. Bell
19M. Niakhate (C)
30S. Widmer
8L. Barreiro
6A. Stach ↪46
5J. Boëtius ↪46
23A. Lucoqui ↪46
29J. Burkardt ↪72
11M. Ingvartsen ↪46
Bench
1F. Dahmen
9K. Onisiwo ↩72
3A. Martín ↩46
18D. Brosinski
34D. Nemeth
42A. Hack ↩46
22K. Stöger
24M. Papela ↩46
31D. Kohr ↩46

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