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Recap: Leipzig Mistake Costs the Game to Mainz

Jesse Marsch's debut in the Bundesliga was ruined by a gutsy performance from 1. FSV Mainz as they take all three points in a slim 1-0 win. A 13th minute goal from a mistake by Nordi Mukiele was the difference with the Mainz keeper stopping several big opportunities to equalize the game.

Mainz started the game quickly, pushing around RB Leipzig in a manner that is similar to the strategy that we normally saw by the visitors in previous seasons. Mainz outworked their opponents and forced turnovers in the midfield. The goal came in the 13th minute when a poor corner was not cleared properly and the ball fell to the feet of captain Moussa Niakhate. The French defender touched the ball into the back of the net, shocking Marsch and his East German club.

Leipzig changed things up in the second half, pushing the game and commanding more of the ball. Chances from Andre Silva and Mohamed Simakan were stopped by Robin Zentner. Other chances from Willi Orban and Marcel Sabitzer missed the net, showing that the Bundesliga runners-up were not sharp enough for week one.

What makes matters even more stark is that Mainz suffered from several key players missing due to a COVID-19 outbreak within the team earlier in the week. So much so that manager Christian Heidel only made changes in order to run down the clock and preserve his team's effort. On the other side, Marsch put in his best options with Hwang Hee-chan, Sabitzer and Dominik Szoboszlai entering the game midway through the second half.

The loss is a major setback for Leipzig as they look to re-establish themselves following the departure of Julian Nagelsmann last season. The positive notes will need to wait until next week when Leipzig play Stuttgart at Red Bull Arena on Friday.

Starting XI:

RB Leipzig: Gulacsi; Mukiele (82' Brobbey), Orban, Simakan, Angelino, Adams (64' Sabitzer), Kampl, Forsberg, Haidara (64' Hwang), Nkunku (64' Szoboszlai), Silva

1. FSV Mainz: Zentner; Hack, Bell, Niakhate, Widmer, Tauer (86' Furstner), Martin, Nebel (89' Rosch), Martins, Burkhardt, Lee (90' Kilian)

Scoring Summary:
13' (FSV Mainz) Moussa Niakhate unassisted

7' (RB Leipzig) Kevin Kampl - YELLOW CARD
48 (FSV Mainz) Paul Nebel - YELLOW CARD
80' (RB Leipzig) Marcel Sabitzer - YELLOW CARD


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