Coronavirus News Asia

Bundesliga squads train for ‘ghost games’


Is it a curse or a blessing? The great German football debate is raging over the launch on Saturday (May 16) of so-called “ghost games” with no fans in the stands.

While rabid football fans around the world, starved for sports — any sports — are preparing for a weekend in front of their flat-screen TVs, coaches and players are unsure about whether the games should even be held at all.

Leipzig coach Julian Nagelsmann is trying to see the positives of the Covid-19 situation, according to a report by

“It is as simple as this: Fans have to be replaced in this situation. The best way to deal with that is to accept it and see the positive effects,” the 32-year-old commented.

Nagelsmann believes players might concentrate much better on their primary tasks if fewer emotions are prevailing. The coach of the club based in eastern Germany is convinced crowds reactions usually influence players, the report said.

“Now, there is a chance to focus purely on footballing aspects. They can make decisions separate from emotions imported from the outside,” Nagelsmann added.

The RB coach said he sees the remaining nine rounds of Bundesliga matches as something like a European Championship, the report said.

“It doesn’t feel like league competition anymore, more like a tournament. You have a break, a preparation phase, and then its kick-off.”

Like Nagelsmann, the German national team’s sports-psychologist Professor Hans-Dieter Hermann recommends turning the challenge into a chance. He stresses players have to be aware that millions are watching.

“Many things might happen with fewer emotions. Players have to remember that they can help secure the economic future of their clubs.


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