Germany: Bundesliga
1 - 1
(1 - 0)
Mainz 05
RB Leipzig
M. Ingvartsen (45)
C. Nkunku (80)
By Peter Weis@PeterVicey

15.30 Kickoffs: Mainz hold Leipzig to 1-1 draw, Bochum stun Frankfurt to claim first win

In a thoroughly entertaining set of 15:30 kickoffs, there were two 1-1 draws and two one-sided clean sheets on the 2022/23 German Bundesliga's 9th matchday. 

Mainz and Augsburg did well to take points off of respective favored opponents Leipzig and Wolfsburg. VfL Bochum furnished the biggest surprise with a 3-0 win over Eintracht Frankfurt. 
Marco Rose's latest homecoming to his longtime Bundesliga club also counted as a reunion with former teammate Bo Svensson. Both current Bundesliga head-coaches suited up for die Rheinhessen together between 2007 and 2010. Mainz and Leipzig both began the day on 11 points. After sharing the spoils, both teams remain in mid-table on 12 points.

Svensson made four changes to the XI that lost 1-2 last week at Freiburg. Alexander Hack returned to the back-three, taking Stefan Bell's place. Edimilson Fernandes and Jae-Sung Lee also took the place of Dany da Costa and Leandro Barreiro. striker Jonathan Burkhardt was unavailable on short notice due to a flu infection. Marcus Ingvartsen ended up starting in the Germany U21 captain's place.

Rose rotated in five new players after the Champions' League win against Celtic on Wednesday. Amadou Haidara and Emil Forsberg took over for Kevin Kampl and André Silva. Willi Orban was the only member of the back-four to remain in place. Benjamin Henrichs, Abode Diallo, and Marcel Halstenberg replaced David Raum, Mohamed Simakan, and Josko Gvardiol.

Peter Gulacsi's horror ACL injury meant that Janis Blaswich had to start between the sticks. Just prior to kickoff, Leipzig chief exec. Oliver Mintzlaff confirmed that club management were in the final phases of signing free-agent Ørjan Nyland to serve as the new #1. Orban donned the captain's armband in Gulacsi's absence.

In terms of possession, Leipzig dominated the game in the opening phases. Svensson's charges made almost no attempt to press the ball, allowing their Saxon guests to pass around the MEWE Arena pitch at will. A few long-launch counters from the hosts produced nothing. Forsberg, Christopher Nkunku, and Timo Werner all sent efforts wide in the opening 20 minutes. Haidara struck th post in the 18th.

Mainz gradually grew more active and were able to create some of their own chances as the half-hour mark approached. Onisiwo forced Blaswich into his first save in the 23rd. Blaswich then had to be at the top of his game to stop a flurry of chances two minutes later. The RB reserve keeper had to intervene several times in the 25th that concluded with a sharp Lee shot headed for the back of the net.

Mainz really started to come alive as the half wore down. The very active Onisiwo caused Rose's defense numerous problems with duel wins and hold ups. Shortly before the stroke of half-time, the Austrian nearly set up Ingvartsen in the 44th. Precisely at the stroke of halftime, Anton STach lifted a beautiful ball into Ingvartsen and the Dane beat Blaswich with a gorgeous finish for the 1-0.

The Pfälzer hosts were certainly pleased to take a 1-0 lead into the tunnel. The second 45 nevertheless began with some bad news. Captain Silvan Widmer had to remain in the locker room injured and was replaced by Danny da Costa. Mainz maintained a physical style of play, but were noticeably more reserved after the restart. Leipzig were more on the front foot. A Diallo goal was disallowed in the 55th..

Svensson's men were still largely able to stand tall as the German Red Bulls pressed for an equalizer. FSV keeper Robin Zentner had to make a pair of saves after the hour-mark, but otherwise was unperturbed. Die Nullfünfter contested every duel strongly, leaving their guests little space and little chance of establishing a flow.

Rose sent on many substitutions, but things didn't really pick up for his team until Yussuf Poulsen was introduced in the 80th. The Dane, returning from a long-injury layoff, made an immediate impact with touches in the box and ultimately laying off for Halstenberg. Nkunku polished off the former German international's cross for the 1-1 in the same minute as Poulsen's introduction.

Neither side could manage a legit chance in the final minutes and the scoreline stood.

Elsewhere in the Bundesliga's 15:30 kickoffs, Augsburg and Wolfsburg also split the difference in a 1-1 draw at the MEWE Arena. Yannick Gerhardt struck for die Autostädter in the first half, but Robert Gumny was able to cancel out the tally with an equalizer off a set piece in the second 45. Incredibly, Augsburg remain on a four-game-undefeated run.

Leverkusen-Schalke proved to be a completely lopsided contest as Xabi Alonso's Werkself pummeled the newly promoted Königsblauen 4-0. Jeremie Frimpong bagged a brace in the rout. Moussa Diaby scored a screamer and even the supposed wantaway attacker Paulinho added a late tally.

There was another lopsided contest over on the Castropher Straße in North Rhine Westphalia. VfL Bochum earned their first victory of the season against a most unlikely opponent. Although the game was often tense, choppy, and full of stoppages, the hosts woke up via a fine headed goal from Philipp Hofmann in the 71st.

Two more tallies in the final minutes enabled Bochum to take a 3-0 victory. Evan N'dicka regrettably ended up turning the ball into his own net in the 87th. Philipp Förster added a dream strike at 90+1. Bochum remain in last-place, but managed to secure an amazing uplifting victory in front of their hometown fans.

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