Frankfurt / Main – Bavarian Prime Minister Markus Söder is “skeptical” about the hoped-for return of football fans to stadiums at the start of the season.
Saxony Prime Minister Michael Kretschmer wants to give the German Football League hearing concept a chance soon, even after the number of corona cases has risen again. The hot topic of the summer continues to spark controversial discussions off the pitch and also occupies high politics. On Monday, federal state health ministers wanted to discuss the measures planned for the DFL.
Söder has cautioned against playing in front of an audience again at the start of the 2020/21 season in mid-September. “I was very attached to the start of the ghost games, it’s going very well. But when the stadium is full for the start of the Bundesliga, I’m extremely skeptical. I can’t imagine it at the moment,” said the head of the CSU in Nuremberg and stressed: “It would also have a devastating signal effect for the public. Both in terms of capacities in the medical field and in relation to cultural events.”
Prime Minister of Saxony Kretschmer, however, is optimistic about the partial use of the stadiums. “I am of the opinion that they should be given the chance to try this thing,” the CDU politician said in midday ARD magazine on Monday in preparation for the DFL concept. It is important “that we take a step forward at this stage as well”.
However, Kretschmer does not believe in mass testing before visiting the stadium because it is impractical. You can’t test that many people in advance, he says. “The principle must be like at work, like shopping, a sporting event must be organized in such a way that you cannot be infected,” he asked.
Söder, on the other hand, is very concerned after the figures at the end of last week surpassed the threshold of 1,000 cases per day for the first time since the start of May. For the 53-year-old player, it would therefore be the wrong signal and “not even wise when we return to school when it is the beginning of autumn to consider that we then have 20,000, 25,000 additional people in the stages”.
Söder would therefore like to discuss the issue in the last week of August in coordination with the federal government at a Prime Minister’s conference. “I can imagine full stadiums during the season, but not at the start of the Bundesliga,” he stressed.
The Bundesliga, 2nd Bundesliga and 3rd League start the new season on the third weekend of September. The first round of the DFB Cup is scheduled a week earlier. The DFL concept initially envisages the return of a reduced number of fans without standing space, alcohol and guest fans. Tickets should only be issued on a personalized basis. This is to reduce the risk of infection during the pandemic. According to Söder, these approaches are theoretically good, but they are difficult to implement in practice.
Like the CSU politician, the Marburger Bund Doctors Association has also warned against returning supporters to Bundesliga stadiums. “The danger of mass infections would be real. If we are unlucky there will be a super broadcaster among the fans and the virus will spread like wildfire,” said Marburger Bund chairman Susanne. Johna, from the “Neue Osnabrücker Zeitung”. “The league’s efforts are more than understandable. But it’s unrealistic that your concept prevents contagion.” She couldn’t imagine the fans staying in their places when her team scored a goal. “You lie in each other’s arms and don’t think about Corona. Everything else would be downright inhumane.
© dpa-infocom, dpa: 200810-99-111461 / 7