JAround 14,000 spectators should be able to attend the games at the European Football Championship in Munich. This was announced by Bavaria’s Prime Minister Markus Söder (CSU) after a cabinet meeting on Friday and spoke of a stadium utilization of “up to 20 percent”. Initially, the “Bild” reported about it.
“The European Football Championship is a special situation that we have,” explained Söder. The games in front of spectators could be viewed as a pilot project for further professional sport. The EM games would be accompanied by a strict hygiene and safety concept.
The three German preliminary round matches at the European Championship will take place in Munich’s Allianz Arena from June 11th to July 11th. Joachim Löw’s team will face world champions France on June 15, defending champions Portugal on June 19 and outsiders Hungary on June 23. In addition, a quarter-finals are scheduled for July 2nd. According to the schedule, the DFB-Elf would only return to Munich as a third party to the knockout duel.
The European Football Union (UEFA) confirmed the Bavarian capital as co-host of the European Championship at the end of April, but the question of viewers remained controversial. The association demanded a guarantee from Munich that the games could be played in front of fans. The state government did not give this assurance at the time. “Everything is subject to the pandemic situation,” said State Chancellor Florian Herrmann (CSU). In contrast to Munich, Bilbao and Dublin lost their EM host roles due to the lack of approval on the fan question.
In a so-called lead scenario, a minimum capacity of 14,500 spectators was classified as realistic for the state capital. Munich business games also ranged from ghost games to a maximum capacity of 27,000 fans. So now up to 14,000 visitors can come to the stadium. “The local authorities decide before the games whether or not to allow spectators,” said UEFA boss Aleksander Ceferin.
Bavaria’s Deputy Prime Minister Hubert Aiwanger (Free Voters) recently spoke out in favor of the scenario with around 15,000 EM spectators in the Allianz Arena in view of the falling corona numbers. “I am already of the opinion that if every fifth seat is occupied and those have been tested beforehand, if you go ahead,” he said on BR television: “Then come in with the people, nothing helps!”
The arena has 70,000 seats. EM games with fans in Munich “could give us a certain normality back,” said DFB organizer Philipp Lahm. But health must come first.