Bayern, Dortmund games halted over fan protests

Bayern Munich’s 6-0 win against Hoffenheim finished in extraordinary circumstances as the teams played the final 11 minutes passing the ball among themselves following a brief delay caused by supporter protests against Hoffenheim owner Dietmar Hopp.

Borussia Dortmund’s 1-0 win against Freiburg was also briefly stopped for the same reason, as BVB supporters continued their recent crusade against Hopp.

Fans at Hoffenheim vs. Bayern Munich and Borussia Dortmund vs. Freiburg unfurled banners and chanted insults towards Hopp, causing both referees to halt the games in an attempt to regain control.

Hopp has been a lightning rod, especially in recent weeks, for some German fans who oppose the way he used his wealth to help Hoffenheim climb through the lower leagues to the Bundesliga with consecutive promotions more than a decade ago.

Referee Christian Dingert stopped play at Hoffenheim in the 79th minute with Bayern leading 6-0.

The referee ordered the teams into the tunnel, and some Bayern players as well as the entire club leadership walked to the stands and urged fans to take it down immediately.

After a 20-minute interruption both teams came back onto the pitch and ran down the clock without playing competitively, ending the game with an ovation for Hopp and with Bayern CEO Karl-Heinz Rummenigge by the billionaire’s side in a show of solidarity.

“I am deeply ashamed for the behaviour of these people. That is inexcusable. It is the ugly face of football,” Rummenigge told reporters.–ESPN

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