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German Football Team Lose 37-0 After Social Distancing During Match

German Football Team Lose 37-0 After Social Distancing During Match
By Gary Connaughton
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An 11th-tier German football match finished 37-0 last weekend after one of the teams involved opted to social distance during the game.

G Ripdorf/Molzen II were due to take on city rivals SV Holdenstedt II in the 3. Kreisklasse last Sunday, but it emerged that the previous week they had faced a player who was infected with coronavirus.

While each member of the team would return negative covid-19 tests, they felt unsafe to play in their next fixture due to a potential 14-day infection period. However, their opponents refused to postpone the match.


Instead, the club fielded a seven-player team, the minimum required for the game to go ahead. Once the contest kicked off, their players observed social distancing guidelines by not coming within two metres of their opponents.

Speaking to ESPN, Ripdorf co-chair Patrick Ristow explained the strange scenes that unfolded.

We tried to postpone the match. But Holdenstedt wanted to play...

We are thankful those seven players volunteered, otherwise the club would have faced a €200 fine for abandoning the match. That's a lot of money for us, especially amid the pandemic.

When the game kicked off, one of our players passed the ball to the opponent and our team walked to the sidelines. Holdenstedt scored, but the referee booked our captain for unsportsmanlike conduct.

The Holdenstedt players did not understand. But we did not want to risk anything. For the rest of the match, our players returned to the field but they only stood on the pitch.

They did not go into direct duels and observed the social distancing rules, keeping two metres between them and Holdenstedt players.

It's fair to say their opponents didn't show much mercy, racking 37 goals across the 90 minutes.

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