SC Paderborn 07 v Mainz: Preview
Paderborn will make history this Sunday when they become the 53rd club to appear in the top flight of German football at home to Mainz.
Few expected the East Westphalian side to gain promotion to the Bundesliga last term, and even fewer will be expecting them to survive their maiden year among the big boys.
That is not going to prevent them from enjoying this historic occasion, however, and they are keen to get the season off to a flyer against Mainz, who have already been knocked out of the Europa League and the DFB-Pokal this season.
``The anticipation is huge,'' said coach Andre Breitenreiter. ``However, being the rank outsiders, we are going to need the support of our fans in all of our games.
``If we manage to keep everything calm surrounding the club, then who knows, maybe we could create the next shock by staying up.''
Breitenreiter is not going to read anything into Mainz's recent results and disappointments, aware instead that his side are up against a team who finished seventh last season.
``They are very quick on the break and I am expecting them to be better defensively than they have been recently,'' he said on his club's website. ``Mainz are going to be even more focused after their recent defeats.''
Focused they may be, but Mainz are also under a great deal of pressure ahead of the start to the season, in particular their new coach Kasper Hjulmand.
Although the club are being patient with the new coach, there is always a limit and the Dane knows he will be judged on results.
``I really hope that all of the good minutes we've had in training can be carried onto the field on Sunday to get us a result,'' he said.
``All I think about is the success of this team and this club, and we know that promoted sides always come into the first game of the season with a lot of positive energy.''
With a positive Paderborn on one side and an embattled Mainz on the other, the stage could well be set for the East Westphalian minnows to deliver their first upset of the season.