Founded in 1905, following a failed attempt to start a club two years prior, 1.FSV Mainz 05 enjoyed a good spell of results whilst playing under the Third Reich. This lead to a place in a new league of sixteen teams formed under the re-organisation of German football.
Following the war, Mainz became a member of the Oberliga Südwest but were never capable of more than a mid-table finish. With the Bundesliga now formed in 1963, Mainz went on to play in the 2.Bundesliga for the next four decades. Financial trouble saw the club withdraw from the league, and were again placed in the Oberliga Südwest, where they would rise once again.
Two fourth place finishes in their 2001/02 and 2002/03 campaigns saw Mainz just miss out on promotion, after conceding in the 93rd minute of their final league game.
First promoted to the Bundesliga in 2004, 1.FSV Mainz 05 are now an established club in the German top division following their current five year stay. Despite their promotion in 2004 under Jürgen Klopp, Die Nullfünfer's stay only lasted for two seasons before they were relegated back to the 2.Bundesliga. After failure to bounce-back to the top flight straight away, this lead to the resignation of Klopp, now at Borussia Dortmund. Under Jorn Andersen, the Norwegian led Mainz back in to the German top flight in 2009. However after a poor start, Andersen was replaced by German, Thomas Tuchel.
Tuchel, seen as a Mainz icon, led the O-Fives to a ninth-placed finish in their first season back in the top flight. The following season, Tuchel and Mainz equalled the Bundesliga starting record by winning their first opening seven games of the season of the 2010/11 season, including a win over Bayern Munich. The same season saw Mainz make Adam Szalai's move from Real Madrid Castilla permanent. The Hungarian went on to score 20 goals for the Rhineland-Palatinate club in 64 appearances before earning a move North to Schalke. Andre Schürrle finished the season with Mainz on 14 goals in all competitions in just 33 games, attracting the attention of Bayer Leverkusen.
The following season, Tuchel took Mainz to the Third-Qualifying round of the Europa League, before been knocked out on penalties by Romanian club Gaz Metan Medias. A disappointing season if the previous campaign was anything to go by. Tuchel could only manage a 13th placed finish for the next two seasons. The 2013/14 season, Tuchel led Mainz to a 7th placed finishing, earning them a right to play in the 2014/15 Europa League. Shinji Okazaki, an arrival from VfB Stuttgart scored 15-goals in his debut season, the record goals scored by a Japanese player in the Bundesliga. The Asian contingent continued through the season, with the signing of Joo-Ho Park and Ja-Cheol Koo shining in their debut seasons at the club. Another name to mention is that of Johannes Geis, signed from Greuther Fürth at the beginning of the 13/14 campaign, the midfielder has proven a vital part to Mainz' plans.
Tuchel announced that he would step down following the closure of the 13/14 season despite their Europa League finish.
"He told me that his role in the club's success is getting smaller and smaller and that the team is becoming more and more responsible for their success," said sporting director Christian Heidel. "He doesn't know how to improve on the level of success that is currently being achieved.
"We cannot praise enough how things have gone over the last few months of the season and I want to use this opportunity to thank Thomas Tuchel and his coaching staff from the bottom of my heart."
Dane Kasper Hjulmand was to take over the helm at Mainz after a successful six years at Danish Superliga club FC Nordsjaelland, three of which he was an assistant manager. Hjulmand has experience in both the Europa League and Champions League, despite not progressing through to the knockout stages as manager.
"I've followed the Bundesliga and already have an impression of the club. I've got to know the club better through talks with sporting director Christian Heidel and was surprised at how the club's philosophy suits me on a personal level. For me, becoming the manager of Mainz was a decision from the heart," Hjulmand told the clubs website.
Eric Maxim Choupo-Moting was the first attacking player to leave Mainz this summer. Shawn Parker soon followed; joining FC Augsburg and with Nicolai Müller looking to join Hamburg, Mainz will be looking short in the forward department. Veterans Christian Wetklo, Heinz Müller and Bo Svensson also parted ways with the club, as did 35-year old Zdenek Pospech who played a large role in Mainz' 2013/14 Bundesliga campaign.
With the departure of two veteran goalkeepers, in came Greek stopper Stefanos Kampino from Panathinaikos whilst Mainz also shored up their defence with Daniel Brosinski from Greuther Fürth and Gonzalo Jara who joined on a costless agent. The latter of the two making an appearance at the World Cup with Chile. Jara, 28, will provide strength across the back-line for Die Nullfünfer, with the defender able to play right-back, centre-back as well as just in front of the back four. Offensively, in came Filip Đuričić on a season-long loan deal from SL Benfica, although a huge talent at 22, there may be too much weight on his shoulders to replace the departing Müller. Đuričić played only a bit-part role for the Portuguese club last season, following his arrival form the Eredivisie, where the Serbian shined for Heerenveen, making 100 appearances, scoring 20 times.
Mainz also have some great talent within their ranks. Parker's brother, Devante has been promoted to the first-team. The 18-year old has been successful throughout the youth teams; playing 32 times for Mainz under-19s, scoring on 11 occasions. Parker can play on either side of midfield as is noticeable for his pace and passing abilities. As well as Parker, Patrick Pflücke will also join the first-team when he turns 18 in November. The German can play in centre-midfield and behind the main striker, and has also represented Germany's youth teams. Last season Pflücke scored 13 times in 33 appearances for Mainz U19's, whilst also having three goals in nine caps for Germany under-18's.
Mainz will have three goalkeepers in their squad next season, Kapino as already mentioned, Robin Zentner and Loris Karius. The latter of the three proved to be vital in Mainz' season. The German played 23 times for the club and has proven himself between the posts for the coming season. The Carnival club also have a good; young keeper in Kapino. Mainz fought off bigger European clubs, including Arsenal for the signature of the Greek international. Kapino, 20, will push Karius for the number one spot, and Hjulmand may deploy the Greek in matches throughout the DFB-Pokal. Karius has enjoyed his return to Germany since spending three years in England with Manchester City, where he didn't make an appearance.
Despite losing Svensson, Mainz were boosted with the additions of Brosinski and Jara. Mainz have another veteran in their ranks, Nikolce Noveski, the centre-back has featured for the club since 2004. The Macedonian is the club captain and is a true, model professional. Despite his age, Noveski featured in all but two Bundesliga games for Mainz last season. The defence will also be made up of Stefan Bell, Niko Bungert, Junior Diaz, Julian Koch, Damian Rossbach, Tobias Schilk and Park. Noveski played the majority of the season alongside Bell, the German has enjoyed his time at Mainz and is very composed on the ball. Diaz arrives back to Mainz as part of Costa Rica's World Cup squad that reached the Quarter-Finals in Brazil. The Costa Rican will have to fight for his place in the starting line-up with South Korean Park competing for the same position. Park has Champions League experience after playing for FC Basel and is known for his crossing abilities.
Mainz are very strong in the midfield areas. As mentioned, Đuričić will provide an attacking threat for Die Nullfünfer, whilst also Mainz have Yunus Malli, South Korean Ja-Cheol Koo, Nicolai Müller, Todor Nedelev and Chinedu Ede. Defensively in midfield, Niki Zimling, Christoph Moritz, Benedikt Saller, Elkin Soto and Julian Baumgartlinger will also play major roles. However, Mainz' main midfielder is Johannes Geis. The 20-year old played in all but one of their Bundesliga matches last season, despite only scoring one goal, the German raked up five assists. Born in Schweinfirt, Geis is German, young and a dynamic midfielder. Not only does his vision excel, but also his passing ability, completing 75% of his passes during last season. Geis will be key to Mainz' plans next season if they want to push on for another European place.
Dani Shahin, Petar Sliskovic, Sebastian Polter, Devante Parker and Shinji Okazaki make up Mainz' attacking threat. In Japanese international Okazaki they have goals. As previously mentioned, following his move from Stuttgart, Okazaki has found the back of the net 15 times in 33 games. Known as the Gerd Müller of Japan, Okazaki possesses great pace amongst the front line as well as an eye for goal. Polter will be looking to make amends following his failure to find the back of the net in the Bundesliga last season. The German was signed at the start of the 13/14 campaign after scoring 5 goals in 26 games for FC Nürnberg.
Hjulmand is known for his never-say-die attitude. The Dane expects nothing less that 100 percent in his players training and performances. The 42-year old manager also likes to play possession football and has also took notes from Pep Guardiola.
"I'm an idealist and pragmatist in equal measures," said Hjulmand. "The values and the philosophy of the club fit perfectly with mine.
Mainz play their home matches at the COFACE Arena; which opened in the summer of 2011. The design of the stadium houses four; one-tier stands with open corners with a view of the city and surrounding nature. Their previous stadium, 'Bruchwegstadion' was known for its atmosphere, which the architects were keen to re-create in the new design. Still standing, the 'Bruchwegstadion' is currently used for youth games. Also, often the fans will march from the old stadium, bringing their support a long the way.