First Team

Points shared in Mainz

The Wolves played out a 1-1 draw at 1. FSV Mainz in their first match of 2024.

VfL-Wolfsburg-Spieler Vraclav Cerny im Zweikampf gegen Mainz 05.

VfL Wolfsburg began the new year and ended the first half of the Bundesliga season with a 1-1 draw at 1. FSV Mainz 05 on Saturday afternoon. Vaclav Cerny put the Wolves in front in the 12th minute at the Mewa Arena, but Silvan Widmer levelled for the hosts on 61 minutes. Niko Kovac’s side remain in 10th place in the table for the moment. VfL are back on their travels next Saturday, 20 January (kick-off 15:30 CET), beginning the second half of the campaign away to 1. FC Heidenheim.


  • 0-1 Cerny (12’): Cerny scores VfL’s first competitive goal of 2024. It’s started by a marvellous long pass from Lovro Majer deep inside his own half, which Cerny latches onto before driving towards goal, twisting inside and out and sweeping the ball into the right corner.
  • 1-1 Widmer (61’): An equaliser that wasn’t exactly in the offing. Widmer receives a long ball on the edge of the area and looks like he’s going to cross, but instead curls the ball into the back of the net with the outside of the boot.

The coaches’ reaction

Niko Kovac: “It was the fight we expected. We knew it wouldn’t be a game at a high technical level. We came under a lot of pressure at the start. We managed to quell that with a really good counter and got more into the game. We should’ve made it 2-0 before half-time, which would’ve steered the contest in a different direction. After the break it was an even game again. We certainly could’ve won on the basis of our chances, but in view of the game it’s a fair result.”

Jan Siewert: “For us the first priority was taking possession away from Wolfsburg. We managed that well in the first ten minutes, until the goal came. We tried our best to defend from the front and play our own attacking game. Then we had to fight our way back, which we did much better in the second half. Thanks to a great goal, the team were then rewarded for the passion which they showed throughout.”


1. FSV Mainz 05: Zentner – van den Berg, Fernandes, Caci – Widmer, Mwene (88‘ Leitsch), Kohr, Papela (62‘ Gruda), Krauß (78‘ Barreiro) – Onisiwo, Burkhardt (78‘ Richter)

Subs: Batz (GK), da Costa, Guilavogui, Mamutovic, Ajorque

VfL Wolfsburg: Casteels – Maehle, Bornauw, Jenz, Cozza (64’ Rogerio) – Vranckx (71’ Svanberg), Arnold – Cerny (71‘ Baku), Majer (90’+3 Gerhardt), Kaminski (71’ Tomas) – Wind

Subs: Pervan (GK), Fischer, Zesiger, Pejcinovic

Goals: 0-1 Cerny (12‘), 1-1 Widmer (61‘)     

Yellow cards: Widmer, van den Berg, Fernandes / Vranckx, Jenz, Casteels, Svanberg

Referee: Patrick Ittrich (Hamburg)

Attendance: 24,000 at Mewa Arena, Mainz