News Bundesliga becomes first top football league to return

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Bundesliga becomes first top football league to return

News Bundesliga becomes first top football league to return

A social distance celebration for Erling Haaland and his Dortmund teammates. Martin Meissner-AP

The Bundesliga became the first top European league to return on Saturday during the coronavirus pandemic, behind closed doors and with strict hygiene measures in place.

The first match to kick off was Fortuna Duesseldorf at home to Paderborn.

Second-placed Borussia Dortmund host arch-rivals Schalke in front of empty terraces at Signal Iduna Park, while leaders Bayern Munich, who are four points clear, visit Union Berlin on Sunday.

Also, Germany’s second tier on Saturday became the first professional western European league to resume following the coronavirus lockdown.

The top-flight Bundesliga restarted later in the day at 1330 GMT.

Bundesliga 2 action returned at 1100 GMT, with four matches played behind closed doors and with strict health guidelines in place.

However, the game between Hanover and Dynamo Dresden was postponed after the Dresden squad was forced to quarantine for two weeks due to two positive tests for COVID-19.

South Korean Lee Jae-Sung scored the first Bundesliga goal in over two months by giving Holstein Kiel a third-minute lead in their 2-2 draw at Regensburg.

There was almost immediate drama in Aue’s 3-1 win over Sandhausen, with visitors Sandhausen having defender Dennis Diekmeier sent off in the fourth minute for conceding a penalty.

The leagues are hoping to conclude by the end of June, having been suspended in mid-March, with nine rounds of regular-season matches to be played.

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