DAVID SMITH - Monday, February 8, 2010
Daniel Williams helped Freiburg keep red-hot Schalke at bay while Michael Bradley couldn't spark Gladbach to a comeback in Mainz.
FSV Mainz 05 1 - 0 Borussia Mönchengladbach
Michael Bradley once again went the distance for the Foals on Sunday, as they were undone by a first-half goal to walk away empty-handed from Mainz.
Gladbach hoped to carry some of the momentum from last weekend's four-goal explosion against Bremen into Mainz, but found their hosts, who remain undefeated so far this season in their home stadium, a significantly tougher nut to crack.
The Foals created the greater number of chances including several in the early minutes by Argentinean striker Raul Bobadilla, but this dominance went unrewarded.
Mainz found their winner with one minute left in the first half, as Gladbach keeper Logan Bailly made a fine save on a header by Malik Fathi, only to have the ball land at the feet of Danish central defender Bo Svensson, who tapped the ball into goal from one yard out.
The second half saw the visitors keep the pressure up around Mainz's goal to no avail, as the hosts held on for their seventh win in ten home games.
Winter signing Jared Jeffrey did not suit up for the hosts, who remain in eighth place and will go on the road to face Hertha on Saturday.
The Foals drop to 13th place with the loss, trailing both Wolfsburg and Cologne by goal differential. They have a short week to pull themselves back together before hosting relegation-threatened Nürnberg on Friday evening.
SC Freiburg 0 - 0 FC Schalke
Daniel Williams made his third straight start for Freiburg, playing the full 90 minutes and picking up a late yellow card as they held Schalke to a tight 0-0 draw on Saturday.
The game looked to be a blowout in the making on paper, as Freiburg were losers of their last four and winless in their previous six overall while Schalke have been in imperious shape as of late in winning five of their last six.
The early going was surprisingly lifeless, however, with the first real action coming moments past the half-hour mark when Cedric Makiadi launched a long-range attempt that just missed the upper left corner shortly followed at the other end by a Kevin Kuranyi header that bounced off the crossbar.
Frieburg were themselves thwarted by the crossbar in the 42nd minute on a header by Mohamadou Idrissou, sending the game into the half scoreless.
The visitors came out firing after the break with Kuranyi setting up Christoph Moritz for a long-range shot which was saved by Freiburg keeper Simon Pouplin.
Schalke substitute Jefferson Farfan gave the hosts some moments of worry in the final 15 minutes with a pair of shots that just missed the target, but they held on in the end for the point.
Freiburg remain just above the drop zone in 15th place, two points ahead of Hannover who occupy the relegation playoff spot. Williams will hope to retain his starting spot when the team heads to Frankfurt on Sunday.
Jermaine Jones is still recovering from his leg injury and did not suit up for Schalke, who remain in third place with the point and next host Cologne on Sunday.
Steve Cherundolo is recovering from a shoulder injury and missed Hannover's 2-1 loss in Hoffenheim on Saturday.
Ricardo Clark was sidelined with a calf injury and did not take part on Sunday evening as Eintracht Frankfurt came from behind to post a 3-2 victory in Dortmund.
David Yelldell is still sidelined with a knee injury and did not make the trip on Saturday afternoon as Koblenz gave up a late goal to tie Cottbus 1-1.
Matt Taylor did not suit up for FSV Frankfurt's 1-1 draw with visiting Aachen on Sunday.
Luis Robles watched from the bench on Sunday as Kaiserslautern dismantled Paderborn to the tune of a 3-0 scoreline in the Fritz Walter Stadium.