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Hertha Berlin appeals Bundesliga relegation

  • AFP, Wednesday, May 16, 2012 4:28 PM

Hertha Berlin has appealed its relegation to the Bundesliga 2 on the grounds that the second leg of its playoff with Fortuna Duesseldorf should be replayed because a double field invasion left its players fearing for their safety.

The second leg in Duesseldorf ended in a 2-2 tie, allowing Fortuna to win the series, 4-3, on aggregate. But the game at the Espirit Arena was twice interrupted as fans ran on the field and fired flares. Hertha players were reluctant to return after a mass invasion by fans late in stoppage time.

"For us, the game was irregular, because it was no longer just about a competitive match," said Hertha's lawyer, Christoph Schickhardt. "The sole purpose of restarting the game was to hinder any further escalation of trouble. According to the DFB statutes, a game under these circumstances is not considered valid and has to be replayed."

The German federation has launched an investigation after the ugly scenes were broadcast live on German TV.

Read the whole story at AFP »

1 comment about "Hertha Berlin appeals Bundesliga relegation".
  1. Carlos Thys, May 17, 2012 at 2:24 p.m.

    Yes, strange things can happen when the committee to decide this convenes tomorrow. A replay could occur. But where? Again in Duesseldorf? I don't see that or a reply occurring. A number of things went wrong. And one could say that a moment of overenthusiasm (trusting the fans right near the end to just stay on the edges of the field and wait for the final whistle) just simply went awry. Who knows? One or two fans thought the game had legitimately been whistled over, and all it took was the first few rushing onto the field in excitement and thrills, and it was then impossible to stop. I don't see the DFL reversing any decisions. They will make stringent requirements on this for next May 2013. It would never go down well that an entire season's hard effort (and 10 years of fighting to get back up into even the 2. Bundesliga) would be thwarted by 1. overenthusiastic fans and 2. game stewards who erred in letting fans get near the pitch in the closing moments of the regular time. The DFL will say, no one got hurt. No Berlin players or team staff were threatened or hurt. So, although match safety rules and crowd control rules were indeed broken, there will be no replay. Fortuna Duesseldorf is promoted; Hertha BSC goes back to the Second Bundesliga.

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