Sun, Dec 13, 2015 - Page 19 News List

Struggling Stuttgart draw 0-0 at Mainz

PROMISING PLAY:Stuttgart’s interim coach Juergen Kramny said that even though the game ended in a draw, his team’s performance was ‘encouraging’

AP, BERLIN

Mainz’s Yoshinori Muto, top, and Stuttgart’s Toni Sunjic are pictured mid-tackle during their German Bundesliga match in Mainz, Germany, on Friday.

Photo: EPA

Stuttgart’s bid to provisionally leave the Bundesliga’s relegation zone was thwarted with a scoreless draw at Mainz on Friday.

The visitors’ first big chance fell to Alexandru Maxim, whose shot was saved by Lorius Karius in the 26th minute, and Timo Warner had the ball in the net six minutes later, but it was from an offside position. Lukas Rupp hit the right post shortly afterward.

“A pity it did not hit the inside of the post and go in, but that is the way the current situation is going for us,” Rupp said.

The close shave spurred Mainz into a response as Daniel Brosinski drew a save from Przemyslaw Tyton. The Stuttgart keeper made another to deny Japanese striker Yoshinori Muto in the 57th, and an even better one to stop Pablo de Blasis in the 78th.

Stuttgart were two points from safety after their fifth game without a win, while Mainz climbed provisionally sixth before the rest of the 16th round.

“Three points would have been better, but the team performance was encouraging, particularly in the first half,” said Stuttgart interim coach Juergen Kramny, who has overseen two draws and one defeat since taking over from the sacked Alexander Zorniger.

Kramny received encouragement from his Mainz counterpart.

“I wished him all the best. I told him to bite through it and keep up the work that he’s started,” Mainz manager Martin Schmidt said.

LIGUE 1

Defender Syam Ben Youssef scored a late equalizer as 10-man Caen drew 1-1 away to Rennes in the Ligue 1 on Friday.

Colombian midfielder Juan Fernando Quintero gave Rennes the lead in the 63rd minute, hitting a low strike that Caen goalkeeper Remy Vercoutre let slip through his fingers.

Third-place Caen remain level on 30 points with second-place Angers, which host Bordeaux on Sunday. Rennes is ninth.

Caen’s hopes were dashed when defender Emmanuel Imorou was sent off in the 35th for impeding Quintero as he raced through.

Rennes then got on top, with strikers Giovanni Sio and Kamil Grosicki going close.

However, after Caen midfielder Jordan Adeoti saw his shot saved, Ben Youssef scored from the corner in the 79th for his third goal of the season.

LA LIGA

Real Sociedad had to recover from a goal down to draw 1-1 at Getafe in the La Liga on Friday.

Getafe caught Sociedad’s defense off guard almost immediately after the restart and Pablo Sarabia headed in Juan Rodriguez’s cross, having raced past a static back four.

Sociedad equalized after Algeria midfielder Madhi Lacen fouled Esteban Granero, and striker Imanol Agirretxe found the back of the net after connecting with a cross from the ensuing free-kick in the 68th.

“We had three points in our grasp toward the end,” said Agirretxe, whose goal was his 12th in La Liga so far this season, two more than Real Madrid’s Cristiano Ronaldo. Only Luis Suarez and Neymar have scored more.

Brazilian Jonathas forced an athletic save from Getafe goalkeeper Vicente Guaita in the 71st.

“Stopping goals, that is my job,” Guaita said. “We’ve got a point at home, now let us hope we can get some more points away.”

Getafe have yet to win an away game this season, having lost six of seven played and conceded 18 away goals in the process.

Sociedad are provisionally 13th in the standings on 16 points after 15 rounds while Getafe are 15th on 15 points.

Barcelona led on 34 points, ahead of their match against Deportivo La Coruna yesterday.

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