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How to get fans back in football stadiums

The 36 clubs in the top two divisions have today agreed on a set of proposals which will form the basis of re-introducing football fans back into watching live football, providing the politicians are in agreement. There are four elements:

  1. no away fans until the end of the year

  2. no alcohol will be sold

  3. no standing...the Fankurven will remain empty

  4. anyone buying a ticket must supply their personal details

At all stages the DFL has said that these measures are temporary and just a means to an end, rather than an end in themselves.

Inevitably these have already come in for heavy criticism, particularly from fan groups across the country. For these, the passion generated by the standing fans, mixed in with freely available alcohol of course, is what makes the experience of a game in Germany such an experience.

However the DFL lead the way back in May when the Bundesliga resumed ahead of any other league and with some success, almost a blueprint for other countries who watched what was happening in Germany then restarted their own leagues in June. To that extent the DFL has bought itself some credibility in trying to find a way to return to normal sporting life in the age of Coronavirus. It remains to be seen whether the political authorities are in agreement and of course a lot will depend on the ongoing public health numbers and outlook.

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