Mainz vs Freiburg: VAR penalty farce as spot-kick is awarded during half-time in Bundesliga relegation clash

Referee Guido Winkmann ignored a penalty shout when Freiburg defender Marc-Oliver Kempf handled in his own box.

The official blew his half-time whistle but appeared to change his mind and call in help from TV replay assistants.

Freiburg quickly jogged off into the changing rooms as Mainz’s players dawdled towards the touchline.

Yet Winkmann ran through sprinklers to the other side of the pitch to view the incident on a monitor.

Fans were miffed as he signalled for a penalty while telling the Mainz players to get back on the field.


Confused Freiburg players took another few minutes to return to the field of play from the changing rooms.

Pablo de Blasis eventually blasted the spot-kick past goalkeeper Alexander Schwolow to put Mainz ahead, with an official time of 45+7 on the clock.

Ref Winkmann then immediately blew for half-time… for the second time.

Even Mainz were bemused by the incident, with their official Twitter page posting: “YESSS! We’re confused. But we’ve scored!”

De Blassis later added a second as the hosts earned a crucial win in the relegation six-pointer.

However, the victory did little to appease home fans who were already furious with the game being played on a Monday night and not at the usual time of 3.30pm on a Saturday.

Mainz pride themselves on being the “sausage, beer and football” brigade, with weekend afternoons always set aside to have a good time while watching the beautiful game.

And they made their feelings known when a barrage of toilet paper rained down on the field just before the second-half was due to kick off.

A huge group of stewards rushed onto the field in a bid to clear up the mess.

But their hard work was undone when fans launched a second round of paper at the goal.

There was also support from the Freiburg faithful, who too were outraged when they discovered the crunch clash was due to be played on a work night at the start of the week.

Mainz are now level with Freiburg on 30 points with the pair 15th and 16th in the Bundesliga.

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