Borussia Park in Mönchengladbach
Dennis Grombkowski / Bongarts / Getty Images
I've been waiting for this game for decades.
My beloved club Borussia Mönchengladbach is in a round of 16 of the Uefa Champions League for the first time.
Well, the 1970s were also very successful times for my club.
But the Champions League wasn't invented back then - and for the most part I wasn't born.
In a few days, Borussia can now play against Manchester City, the starting squad of start coach Pep Guardiola.
Under normal circumstances, I would have done anything to be live in the stadium.
To sing, romp, rant and cheer there.
I am like a little boy
Looking forward to my first round of 16.
But now I've lost all anticipation.
It's not because of the empty stadium.
As a football fan and pandemic participant, you are always used to new demands.
I also found it legitimate for the Bundesliga to continue with ghost games.
Without them, many a lonely day in the shutdown would have been even dreamer.
It is quite possible that football was able to prevent one or the other depression.
At best, professional football is a role model in the tricky use of rules.
But now it becomes completely absurd.
Because entry from Great Britain to Germany is currently banned due to the highly contagious virus variant B.1.1.7, Gladbach will now play his "home game" against Manchester in Budapest.
At times when you shouldn't travel, two teams jet into the Corona »risk area« (Foreign Office) Hungary in order to dance out the laws in Germany.
They use a special rule for professional athletes issued by Viktor Orbán's government.
The home game of Rasenballsport Leipzig against Liverpool FC will also take place in Budapest.
This alternative tourism is just as stupid and superfluous as the short flying visit of FC Bayern Munich to Qatar to take part in a "Club World Cup" whose sporting value is comparable to the city championship of Elmshorn and whose sole attraction is the many millions that the Trip brings in.
When striker Thomas Müller tested positive for Corona on site, he was allowed to fly back to Munich in a private jet in parallel with the team.
Any other German without private access (and without the help of an oil dictatorship against the very friendly club management) would have spent almost two weeks in isolation on site.
But in the world of professional football, the laws are extremely different.
Didn't some of them hear the shot?
Or seen too late?
When asked about humility and responsibility, some leaders of professional football would probably bet on a third division storm duo.
At best, they are role models in dealing with rules that have a good reason and should apply to everyone.
A Europe-wide competition is maintained amid the most convulsive contortions, which is simply not fitting in with the times.
The organizing Uefa should have exposed him at the latest when the mutations appeared.
A week-long final tournament in one place at a later date and in one place would have been an alternative.
If necessary, the current competition can also be canceled.
As a result, the Uefa and the 16 clubs would have lost a lot of money in sponsorship and television money.
But on the one hand, these are the richest clubs in Europe (apart from Mönchengladbach).
On the other hand, the damage to the image that is currently occurring could be much more damaging.
But we're talking about the richest clubs in Europe (except Mönchengladbach).
And: the damage to the image that they cause by their false insistence on the game could end up costing them dearly: They may earn millions - but they lose followers who have long been unable to follow.
Or want to.
Icon: The mirror