WORLD Euro 2020: Germany banned from training at Wembley

WORLD

Euro 2020: Germany banned from training at Wembley

Xinhua

11:08, June 28, 2021

Raphael Varane (R) of France blocks a shot from Thomas Mueller of Germany during the UEFA Euro 2020 Championship Group F match between France and Germany in Munich, Germany, June 15, 2021. (Photo: Xinhua)

With utter astonishment and growing concern, the German team reacted to the latest developments around the last 16 duel of Euro 2020 against England next Tuesday.

Atalanta full-back Robin Gosens called it a "border-line case" coming near a "doubtful issue" that the 2014 world champion isn't allowed to run its last pre-game training session at the Wembley stadium. He is surprised that 45000 fans are allowed, while only 2000 German supporters are approved.

The pitch in the London arena is given a recovery break after several games to preserve the pitch's condition due to a UEFA direction. "Some of us, including me, would have preferred to get to know the arena's atmosphere in advance," Gosens said.

"In the end, you see 45000 fans in a country with over averaged infection numbers. This doesn't make things safer for everyone. It's far from ideal looking at the entire picture," Gosens added.

Chelsea player Kai Havertz agreed with Gosens and said it's a pity not to have more German fans around.

"This is an away game for us. But it triggers additional motivation to face a packed arena with the majority of fans against you," the Blues 2021 Champions League final winning goal scorer commented.

Some German media spoke of unequal conditions as for Saturday's encounter between Italy and Austria, 18910 fans were allowed. Only three days later, the number of spectators is ungraded to the double extent.

"You can't say it's a significant disadvantage for you as it reduces our travel-time in turbulent times of a pandemic. We go there late on Monday and return after the game," Gosens said.

Nevertheless, some of the decisions are causing mixed feelings among German fans and squad members.

Due to strict travel restrictions, 2000 tickets are available for German supporters, mostly living and working in and around the British capital. For all others, traveling has become impossible as a quarantine of up to 10 days is required.

The UK government has enforced a quarantine system for international arrivals heading into the country from countries with higher Covid-19 rates and lower vaccination speeds. Germany has been put on the UK government's 'Amber' list, reflecting Germany's slow response to the vaccine rollout.

Gosens called it a particular motivation to make the Three Lions fans as quiet as possible. "We are full of joyful anticipation ahead of a unique game facing a great team like England in their home arena," the German stated.

The German association didn't officially comment on the actions taken by the UEFA and the British Government, but inside reports speak of great astonishment among officials and coaching staff.

Havertz said it's no disadvantage to know about "the English game approach and the intensity of English football" as Premier League clubs employ six German internationals.

Havertz, Timo Werner, and Antonio Ruediger play for Chelsea while Ilkay Guendogan (Citizens), second keeper Bernd Leno (Arsenal), and Robin Koch (Leeds) complete the group of England employees.

Gosens is expecting a well-prepared English side. "They won't take things easy and think they are already through. They will meet us with a lot of respect. I think they have a good reason to do that. We want to get through to the final."

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