Coronavirus pandemic: Germany's Bundesliga, lower-league football put on hold until April

Teams from Bundesliga and 2. Bundesliga did not play this weekend after matches were suspended due to the outbreak of the virus and Seifert said any decision on the season would be taken in the week of 30 March

Reuters March 16, 2020 21:10:50 IST
Coronavirus pandemic: Germany's Bundesliga, lower-league football put on hold until April

Germany’s Bundesliga and second division will pause at least until 2 April and possibly beyond due to the coronavirus , DFL CEO Christian Seifert said on Monday.

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Gates are closed at the stadium where the Bundesliga match between FC Union Berlin and FC Bayern should have taken place in Berlin. AP

Germany’s top two divisions did not play this weekend after matches were suspended due to the outbreak of the virus and Seifert said any decision on the season would be taken in the week of 30 March.

“I want to stress that we do not expect to play on 3 April,” Seifert told a news conference. “This is the most difficult period of our professional life."

“There are more questions than answers. We have to learn to understand that whatever yesterday was seen as normal at the moment is not so normal any more and we don t know what to expect after today.”

He said the league would continue to put the health of people as its highest priority but the longer the pause the greater the pressure on the entire football industry.

“Closed-door games could be the only way to survive. But if now people say they reject such games then they should not think about 18 or 20 professional clubs because there will not be 18 or 20 clubs,” Seifert said.

“The biggest revenues are broadcasting and sponsorship and ticket sales. When you don’t have ticket revenues, broadcasting revenues or sponsorship revenues then it is only a matter of time,” he added.

The DFL is in charge of organising the first and second divisions of German football.

Germany has almost 5,000 people infected and 12 dead from the coronavirus .

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