Bundesliga to restart despite Dresden setback: DFL boss
FRANKFURT AM MAIN: The Bundesliga restarting is not at risk even after the entire second tier Dynamo Dresden squad was quarantined, the head of the German soccer league ( DFL ) said.
Dynamo was ordered to self-isolate for 14 days on Saturday after tests revealed two new cases of coronavirus.
The blow came just days after Chancellor Angela Merkel's government gave the green light for the Bundesliga season to resume on May 16 following a two-month absence.
But DFL boss Christian Seifert downplayed the Dynamo setback.
It is not a reason to question the entire season, he told German broadcaster ZDF on Saturday night.
It was always clear to me that this could happen. We are at the beginning of the restart.
The Bundesliga will be the first top European league to restart matches since the outbreak of the coronavirus forced lockdown measures to be imposed across the continent.
Matches will be played behind closed doors and with a maximum number of 300 people, including both teams, allowed in each game.
In the lead-up period, all teams must go to a week-long quarantine training camp.
There are still concerns that a coronavirus outbreak in the league could halt the resumption of the season, this time forever.
Seifert said that while he saw no problem at the moment, other coronavirus cases could throw a key in the works.
It can reach a scale where it is no longer feasible, he said. It would depend on how much time is left to finish the season.
The Bundesliga season is slated to end on June 30, he said.
Many player contracts are running out, so we want to play as many games as possible before that, Seifert said, adding that some games could also be postponed until early July.
The quarantine means Dynamo, who is at the bottom of the second division, will not be able to play his match against Hannover next weekend.
In addition to the players, the club is isolating all of its training and supervision staff.
The German league said Thursday that it had recorded 10 positive cases of 1,724 player and staff tests in the 36 major clubs in the first wave of tests, and two more in the second.