In a match, where both sides needed a victory to carry on the Champions League dreams, neither were able to claim three points. Andre Schürrle scored the opening goal but Jairo Sampeiro equalized soon after to share the spoils at the Volkswagen Arena.
Open first half leads to no goals
Bruno Henrique had the opening chance of the match, creating the opportunity for himself. He danced around a couple of Mainz defenders before firing a shot inches wide of the left post. Loris Karius was not sure if it was going wide, but still dove to cover any angle left open.
Off of a corner for Mainz in the 15th minute, Stefan Bell tested the Wolfsburg goalkeeper. A header got redirected inside the area and Bell was standing in the right place. He stuck his right boot out to get a touch on the ball and his ensuing shot found the target.
Jhon Cordoba then forced Koen Casteels to make a save in the 24th minute. He worked the ball towards the right side of the box. From an acute angle, the Colombian got made the shot stopper use his right hand to push the ball away from danger.
Andre Schürrle had his first opportunity of the match right before the half hour mark. He found a bit of space in the middle of two Mainz defenders and received the ball. But his effort was not strong enough as he hit it straight into the arms of the visiting goalkeeper. He had another go a couple of minutes later following a poor corner. The clearance fell to him and tried his luck from distance. His right-footed shot dipped and Karius caught the attempt with ease.
Both sides find back of the net
Wolfsburg had been looking for that opening goal. They put pressure on Mainz' back line throughout the opening half and continued to do so in the latter half. And in the 52nd minute, that pressure finally paid off. Henrique, who had been so lively in the first 45, slipped Schürrle in behind the defense. The German international then lofted the ball up and over Karius.
Somehow, nine minutes after the Wolfsburg goal, Mainz failed to level the match. Yunnus Malli was one versus one with Casteels inside the six yard box. He tried to be too clever with his finish, and failed on the technique, hitting a poor shot straight at the Belgian goalkeeper.
To Mainz' credit, they never stopped searching for that equalizing goal. They knew that if they used their pace, they could hit Wolfsburg on the counter and capitalize on that. In the 66th minute, Mainz found the back of the net. Bell hit a long ball over the top that substitute Jairo Samperio got on the end of after battling with Christian Träsch. Sampeiro won the battle and placed his shot into the back of the net.
That goal gave Mainz the confidence to keep hunting for goals, which could steal three points on the road. Christian Clemens unleashed a wicked attempt from well outside the area. His shot curled and Casteels managed to get a palm on it to push it to safety.