Mainz draws 0-0 with Hannover in Bundesliga, Freiburg-Moenchengladbach also scoreless

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Mainz' Koo Ja-cheol, center, challenges for the ball with Hannover's Leonardo Bittencourt, left, and Hiroki Sakai during the German Bundesliga soccer match between FSV Mainz 05 and Hannover 96 in Mainz, Germanyy, Sunday Aug. 31, 2014. (AP Photo/dpa, Arne Dedert)


Mainz' Shinji Okazaki, left, is fouled by Hannover's Marcelo, center, while Hannover's Christian Schulz looks on, during the German Bundesliga soccer match between FSV Mainz 05 and Hannover 96 in Mainz, Germany Sunday Aug. 31, 2014. (AP Photo/dpa, Arne Dedert)


BERLIN — Mainz could only draw 0-0 with Hannover as the home side's difficulties continued, while Freiburg and Borussia Moenchengladbach also played out a goalless draw in the Bundesliga on Sunday.

Mainz, which failed to qualify for the Europa League and was knocked out in the first round of the German Cup, was left to rue a penalty appeal that wasn't given in the first half.

Shinji Okazaki fell under Marcelo's challenge in the 28th minute, albeit theatrically, and referee Sascha Stegemann decided to wave play on.

The Japan striker created the home side's best chance six minutes later with a fine cross, but Julian Baumgartlinger was unable to direct his volley on target.

The visitors improved as the game progressed.

Mainz goalkeeper Loris Karius denied Joselu before the break and Christoph Moritz had to clear Hiroshi Kiyotake's shot off the line with Karius beaten after it.

Mainz brought on Devante Parker, younger brother of German-American striker Shawn, for his Bundesliga debut with eight minutes remaining, but neither side could force a breakthrough.

Mainz general manager Christian Heidel dismissed suggestions of a crisis at the club.

"It's being turned into a drama by those outside the club, internally it's nothing," Heidel said. "We had a change (of coach) and that takes a bit of time."

New coach Kasper Hjulmand, who took over from Thomas Tuchel in the offseason, can count on reinforcements for the games ahead.

The club announced the signing before the game of Argentine forward Pablo De Blasis from Greek side Asteras Tripoli, and the return on loan for the season of Tunisian forward Sami Allagui from Hertha Berlin.

Heidel also said he expected defender Philipp Wollscheid and attacking midfielder Jonas Hofmann to join from Bayer Leverkusen and Borussia Dortmund, respectively. Hofmann was due to sign a loan deal.

Freiburg was left to rue Admir Mehmedi's missed penalty in the late game.

Mehmedi sent his penalty well over the crossbar in the 63rd. Referee Peter Gagelmann awarded the spot-kick after Tony Jantschke brought down Freiburg substitute Maximilian Philipp.

"It wasn't great, but I'm at 'Gladbach since February 2011 and that's the first time we've taken away a point," said Moenchengladbach coach Lucien Favre. "A few months ago we lost 4-3 here, yet we were 10 times better. But that's football."

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