Coronavirus: Werder Bremen eyes stadium switch if Bundesliga resumes

Angela Merkel's government still needs to give permission for league football to resume. A decision is expected this Thursday.

The coronavirus pandemic brought the German league to a halt in mid-March.   -  Getty Images

Struggling Werder Bremen may have to play in a different city if the Bundesliga resumes next month because the local government could prolong its ban on games at the Weserstadion.

The coronavirus pandemic brought the German league to a halt in mid-March with Bayern Munich four points clear and Werder second from bottom, but the Bundesliga said last week that it is ready to resume from May 9, albeit behind closed doors with fans locked out.

Angela Merkel's government still needs to give permission for league football to resume. A decision is expected this Thursday.

READ| Bundesliga will go under if football doesn't restart, says Dortmund CEO Watzke

But in Bremen, which is a state in Germany's Federal system, the city's senator for the interior Ulrich Maeurer has insisted no games can be played at their Weserstadion ground during the crisis.

That means Werder could have to play its remaining home games elsewhere, with the nearest cities with Bundesliga-level stadiums -- Hamburg, Hanover and Wolfsburg -- being considered.

“If, for whatever reason, we can't play in Bremen, then you have to look for alternative locations,” said Bremen CEO Klaus Filbry.

READ| No promises La Liga can resume before summer, says Spanish health minister

Relations between Werder and Maeurer were strained before the coronavirus crisis as the politician has repeatedly demanded the club contribute to the cost of policing high-risk matches.

Werder is eight points from safety with nine games left. Its finances have been hit by the crisis. On Friday, the club confirmed it had taken out an emergency loan and expect a loss of more than 40 million euros ($43 million) this season.

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