The Bundesliga and second-tier Bundesliga 2 is set to allow away fans inside the stadium from matchday three on August 27 as COVID-19 infection across Germany continues to fall, the German Football League (DFL) announced. Earlier, German authorities announced that limited attendances at large-scale sporting events will be permitted. The new season also permits five substitutions per match.
“For as long as spectator capacity is still subject to legal restrictions, 5% of the tickets for each game are to be reserved for away fans,” the DFL said. “Once restrictions are lifted completely, there will be an automatic return to the intended contingent of 10%.” In principle, all venues are allowed to operate at 50-percent-capacity or as many as 25,000 fans for stadiums with a capacity exceeding 50,000.
The only exception is reigning Bundesliga champions Bayern Munich, where up to 20,000 fans will be allowed into home games at the 75,000-capacity Allianz Arena because officials in Bavaria are allowing only 35 percent of capacity. The new Bundesliga season begins on August 13 with defending champion Bayern Munich playing away at Borussia Moenchengladbach.
Fans purchasing tickets will have to provide proof of vaccination, recovery from COVID-19 or a negative test result not older than 48 hours. They will have to follow strict health protocols, including wearing of face-masks while entering or moving around a stadium. They will only be allowed to remove their masks once at their seat. Tickets will also be personalized to allow clubs to trace potential chains of infection.
Due to the outbreak of coronavirus infection last season, most matches were played without fans with away fans barred from entering stadiums of the hosting cities. The German authorities also added that more COVID-19 restrictions could be relaxed should the infection rates in Germany remain low and should the country’s vaccination rollout continue. The current decision will remain in place until September 11.
Elsewhere, La Liga fans will also be allowed to return to stadiums for the start of the 2021-22 season, Spanish health minister Carolina Darias has confirmed, while the Premier League have announced that they are “committed to the ambition of having full stadiums for the start of next season.” Limitations on the number of spectators allowed into French stadiums will also be lifted at the start of Ligue 1 season.
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