The new corona infections and the quarantine imposed at Dynamo Dresden raise questions about the planned continuation of professional football: How many such cases can game operations tolerate until they collapse?
Dynamo Dresden has had a nice and modern stadium for some time, which can fill well with a feverish atmosphere. When the ranks, unlike now and unlike in the medium term, are full. A few days ago, the stadium reminded, as witnesses report, of an Asian airport: The SG Dynamo players hired for training were fitted at the entrance and scanned with infrared thermometers. The results were clear: all cadre members were at normal body temperature and showed no other symptoms that could have indicated infection with the corona virus. But since Friday night it has also been clear to the Dresden soccer players: symptomlessness doesn’t mean anything.
After evaluating all laboratory samples from the third series of tests, which was carried out on Friday (and therefore the day after the first post-corona team training), “it was clear on Saturday that there were two new corona cases at SGD,” the association said With. The consequence: “After an intensive analysis of the situation, the health authority in Dresden responsible for the SGD in Dresden decided on Saturday that the entire second division team, including the coaching and support team, must now go into a 14-day quarantine at home.” The Dresden case thus has the potential to shake professional football’s reopening plans.
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It was only on Wednesday that Chancellor Angela Merkel and the country heads of the German Football League (DFL) gave the “green light” to restart the professional leagues in the second half of May. In an absolutely emergency operation, the clubs want to whip the nine outstanding match days within six weeks from May 16 – this is the fragile plan, which is now questioned. Especially since it is rather unlikely that Dresden will remain the only location with positive results in the many other planned tests.
The immediate consequences of the Dresden quarantine are first of all: Dynamo cannot compete against Greuther Fürth either this weekend in Hanover or the following week. The 51-page hygiene concept of the DFL also states that a team must compete in a seven-day quarantine training camp before the restart. This would also render the Dresdeners’ game in Bielefeld on May 27 invalid.
The DFL tried to put the effects of the Dresden quarantine into perspective. “I do not interpret this as a setback,” said head of the league Christian Seifert on Saturday on ZDF: “It was completely clear to me that this could happen at any time. We are at the beginning of the reentry. If Dresden goes into quarantine for 14 days, it is not Reason to question the entire season. We’re not changing the goal at the moment, we’re just changing the plans. “
In fact, even in the tight schedule up to the end of June, the missing games could still be pressed. Either way, discussions about distortion of competition are likely to be heard. So far, two “English weeks” are planned, with games during the week. Dresden, currently bottom of the table, and other clubs would now have to spend three or even four English weeks, i.e. continuously – or the season would have to last until July. The DFL would like to avoid that because numerous contracts expire on June 30th. This week, the DFL wants to discuss how the case will affect the schedule.
But in addition to these concrete consequences, it is not even possible to see in outline what dynamism the positive cases from Dresden (one of the positively tested professionals is Simon Makienok, who himself outed on Instagram) will release. And the question is what happens if there are further positive tests. Dealing with infected people from the player or supervisory staff has been the crucial question since the DFL’s hygiene concept was published, and the answer has been rather vague over the past few days. A good week ago, there were a total of ten positive results in the 36 professional clubs in the first series of tests, but everyone had been there in individual and small group training; So according to the specifications without direct body contact. For this reason, at 1. FC Köln (three cases) only the infected were sent to quarantine, the others were allowed to go into team training. It was similar in Dresden, which already had positive results in this first row. Only Erzgebirge Aue already carved out here by putting his team in three days of isolation.
At the time of the two cases, Dynamo, like all professional clubs, was already in team training, where there is close physical contact – this is the major difference compared to the cases of the past week. How the two cases got infected is open, according to the city administration. It is excluded that the first person who tested positive passed the virus on to the two newly infected people. This can be demonstrated by the character and intensity of the contacts without any apparent doubt. After reviewing the training plans to date, the official medical officer responsible had therefore decided to send the entire team home for two weeks, because team training with full body contact would increase the risk that the virus would now spread further. Uncontrolled.
Another unknown figure: the professionals and their concerns
This is a blow to the DFL. In their concept, the medical experts had tried to argue that if there was a positive case during team training or play, there should be no quarantine for the whole group, but only for the individual infected. The Sports Ministers Conference and the Federal Minister of the Interior Horst Seehofer (CSU) spoke out against it. Formally, the decision lies with the local health authorities – and at least that in Dresden followed the strict line. The question is: is the Dresden example now a school?
Just as many offices with 36 medical officers are responsible for the 36 clubs. Accordingly, it is also conceivable that they come to completely different conclusions. And even if only a few medical officers cause 14-day team quarantines, the game operation could get into turbulence. Which raises the question of how many team quarantines a league can afford without collapsing. The DFL representatives have not yet given a specific number. “It is clear that there is certainly a size, then at some point it will no longer be feasible,” said league boss Seifert on ZDF.
But there is also another unknown variable: the professionals and their concerns. When the dynamo players were informed of the positive tests of the two colleagues, who were no longer allowed to appear, there were many stunned expressions, it was said from the mouth of the mouth.