Leverkusen vs Bayern Bundesliga Game Delayed Due To Fan Protests

Feb 10, 2024

A worker picks up sweets thrown before the Bundesliga match between Bayer Leverkusen and Bayern Munich.© AFP

Saturday's Bundesliga match between leaders Bayer Leverkusen and Bayern Munich was delayed 10 minutes from kick-off as fans continued league-wide protests against the German FA. Fans from both the home and visiting sections threw tennis balls, foil-covered coins and other objects onto the pitch while chanting slogans criticizing the German FA's decision to allow foreign investment. Players from both sides, who were on the pitch ready to start the highly anticipated match, hit balls to each other and jogged to keep warm while stadium announcers told fans to stay away.

Earlier on Saturday, the match between Union Berlin and Wolfsburg was delayed by about an hour due to similar protests organized by fan groups.

On Friday night, fans threw objects onto the field at the second division match between Hamburg and Hannover, while a banner featuring several figures in the cross-hairs was unveiled.

Among those targeted were representatives of German and foreign equity firms, as well as Martin Kind, the managing director and benefactor of Hanover.

In December, a two-thirds majority of first and second division clubs voted in favor of selling a portion of the television rights in exchange for funding to be used to market the league.

Fans of German football, which has rules to ensure member ownership of clubs, have been critical of efforts to encourage foreign or domestic investment in the sport.

(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)

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