Thomas Mueller joked about the Bundesliga without fans feels like “old man’s football, 7 pm, under floodlights” after Bayern Munish brushed Union Berlin.
A first-half penalty of Robert Lewandowski and a late header from Benjamin Pavard sealed Bayern’s win in front of empty terraces in Berlin.
The result leaves defending champions four points clear as the German League restarted this weekend after a two-month suspension due to Covid-19.
However, Mueller admitted that it was strange playing Union Berlin behind closed doors at their compact Alten Foersterei stadium, which is usually packed with 22 000 passionate home fans.
“It felt a bit like the atmosphere you get for old man’s football, 7 pm, under floodlights, but as soon as the bell started to roll, the game took our focus,” Thomas Mueller said.
The Bundesliga became the first top-ranking European league to resume this weekend, using extreme hygiene guidelines, regular testing of players, and insisting on games in near-empty stadiums. Hugging and embracing and handshakes were also banned.
“There were a few butterflies before the restart, wondering how it would go, like before the first game of the season in August,” Thomas Mueller said.
“I wasn’t worried about anything going wrong, everything was explained clearly to us.”
“Union Berlin, just like us, were well prepared, no handshakes before kick-off etc.”
Mueller said the defending champions were happy to win their first game after the restart to keep them on the course for an eighth consecutive league title.
“We came here with the goal of getting the three points,” Mueller added.
“We had a bit more security after the second goal.”