Bavaria has joined Germany’s other federal states in allowing a maximum of 25,000 fans to attend football stadia for the new domestic season.

On July 6, it was announced that a maximum of 25,000 fans would be permitted to enter venues for major sporting events in Germany, under new guidelines issued ahead of the start of the 2021-22 Bundesliga season on Friday.

The announcement followed a meeting of officials from Germany’s 16 states and was designed to regulate sports events that attract spectator numbers in excess of 5,000. Under the rules, which initially will be applicable through to September 11, sports stadia will be able to admit fans at 50% capacity, up to a cap of 25,000 spectators.

However, COVID-19 infection rates must not exceed 35 per 100,000 people over the previous seven days for this to happen. If infection rates rise above this number, a limit of 5,000 fans will be imposed.

Only fans who can prove they have been vaccinated, or can present a negative test, will be allowed entry and various hygiene rules must be followed. However, individual states have the option of adjusting the framework and this was set to impact on Bayern Munich.

The state of Bavaria had decided on maximum capacities of 35% for its venues, up to a limit of 20,000 fans, meaning that Bayern’s Allianz Arena was set to be limited to the latter figure. However, Bavaria’s Minister-President, Markus Söder, announced yesterday (Tuesday) that the state would follow the rest of the country in adhering to the 25,000 cap.

Bavaria has been buoyed by Munich’s hosting of games during UEFA Euro 2020. Around 14,500 fans were allowed to attend UEFA Euro 2020 matches at Allianz Arena after the state government in Bavaria gave the green light for the venue to open at up to 20% capacity. The Allianz Arena hosted all three of Germany’s group stage matches at the tournament, as well as a quarter-final on July 2.

UEFA confirmed in April that Munich had retained its host status for Euro 2020 amid doubts over the Allianz Arena’s ability to allow fans. Bavaria’s Ministry of Health recently stated that the four Euros games in Munich had “made no significant contribution to the (COVID-19) infection rate in the Free State”.

Image: Tobias Alt/CC BY-SA 4.0/Edited for size