Bundesliga returns: German league offers first glimpse of post COVID-19 football
Germany’s Bundesliga on Saturday (May 16, 2020) became the first of Europe’s major soccer leagues to resume after a two-month halt due to the COVID-19 outbreak across the globe.
Even though the matches were played without any spectator in the stadium, a billion fans around the world watched it on their television screens.
Bundesliga in its 26th game week saw 5 matches where the most awaited match was between Borussia Dortmund and their traditional arch-rivals FC Schalke. Dortmund with a comfortable 4-0 win over Schalke remained just one point behind league winner and table topper Bayern Munich.
In the other matches, Wolsburg ‘kicked-off’ their post COVID-19 football campaign against Augsburg, Dusseldorf played Paderborn, Hoffenheim took on Hertha BSC and Leipzig locked their horns with Freiburg.
For Dortmund, E Haland scored the first goal with an assist from T Hazard in the 29th minute of the game. Raphael Guerriero scored a brace while T Hazard also registered his name on the score-sheet.
In an empty Augsburg Arena, Wolfsburg stretched their unbeaten league run to seven games with a 2-1 win against Augsburg, moving up to sixth on the points table.
R Steffen in the 43rd minute scored for Wolfsburg while T Jedvaj equaled the score-line in the 54th minute. However, the visitors capitalised in stoppage time when substitute D Ginczek converted Kevin Mbabu`s low cross ball into the winning goal.
The other game was between Hertha BSC and Hoffenheim where Hertha BSC thrashed Hoffenheim 3-0 at an empty Rhein-Neckar-Arena. Hertha’s forward Vedad Ibisevic scored against his former side whereas Brazilian Matheus Cunha also netted a late goal after Hoffenheim’s Kevin Akpoguma’s own goal.
In Leipzig vs Freiburg, both teams restricted each other after scoring a goal and the match resulted in a draw. Freiburg took the lead in the 34th minute when Manuel Gulde got the last touch to guide home a corner, with the teammates celebrating his goal by bumping elbows rather than sharing high-fives and hugs. Leipzig who are fourth on the table leveled in the 77th minute when Captain Y Poulsen scored with an assist from K Kampl.
The two of the last three teams of the table, Dusseldorf and Paderborn couldn’t start their campaigns with a goal as both teams ended the match with a 0-0 scoreline.
Bundesliga had resumed after the coronavirus halt since March 8. The last matches were played between Bayern Munich and Augsburg while Mainz 05 were against Dusseldorf.