Bundesliga to Restart Despite Dresden COVID-19 Setback

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*Five new cases in Spanish top two divisions * 3rd in Brighton * 3 in Portugal

Dynamo Dresden, who play in the second tier of German football, have put their entire squad and coaching staff into two-week isolation after two players tested positive for coronavirus.

However, DFL boss, Christian Seifert, insists restart to go ahead as planned.

The Bundesliga and Bundesliga 2 are due to restart on Saturday, 16 May.

It is set to be the first European league to restart following the coronavirus shutdown.

“The fact is that we can neither train nor participate in a game in the next 14 days,” said Dynamo.

On Thursday, the German Football Association (DFB) said the season would resume under strict health protocols that ban fans from the stadium and require players to have Covid-19 testing.

About 300 people, including players, staff and officials, will be in or around the stadiums during match days.

The league has been suspended since 13 March. Clubs returned to training in mid-April, with players working in groups.

But on Saturday Dresden, who are bottom of Bundesliga 2, said they would be unable to fulfill the initial fixtures.

“In the past few weeks, we have made enormous efforts in terms of personnel and logistics in order to strictly implement all the prescribed medical and hygienic measures, “said Dynamo sports manager Ralf Minge.

“We are in contact with the responsible health authority and the DFL (German Football League) to coordinate all further steps.”

Dresden were due to resume the season on 17 May at Hannover 96.

However, in a swift move to reassure fans, DFL boss, Christian Seifert, downplayed the Dynamo setback, insisting that the season will resume as planned.

“It’s not a reason to call the entire season into question,” Seifert told German broadcaster ZDF late Saturday.

“It was always clear to me that this could happen. We’re at the very beginning of the restart.”

The Bundesliga will be the first top European league to restart matches since the outbreak of the coronavirus forced lockdown measures to be imposed across the continent.

Matches will be played behind closed doors and with a maximum number of 300 people, including both teams, allowed at each game.

In the run-up to the restart, all teams must go into a one-week quarantine training camp.

There are still worries that an outbreak of the coronavirus in the league could halt the resumed season, this time for good.

Seifert said that although he saw no problem right now, further coronavirus cases could throw a spanner in the works.

“It can reach a scale where it’s not feasible anymore,” he said. “It would depend on how much time there is left to finish the season.”

The Bundesliga season is slated to end on June 30, he said.

“A lot of player contracts are running out so we want to play as many games as possible before then,” Seifert said, adding that some matches could also be postponed until early July.

Elsewhere in Europe, five players have tested positive across Spain’s top two divisions, a third player from Premier League side Brighton tested positive with three pl