BERLIN (AP) — Union Berlin is to celebrate its stadium’s 100th birthday by playing in front of supporters for the first time since the coronavirus pandemic began.

The Bundesliga club said Friday that it will host Nuremberg for a pre-season friendly on Sept. 5, and that up to 5,000 people can attend according to local infection protection regulations relating to open-air events from Sept. 1.

Hygiene measures will still apply. Tickets are only available for club members over 12 years old and will be issued after a draw. Tickets will be personalized “in order to ensure legally required tracking of visitors,” the club said.

Those attending will need to wear a mask until reaching their allocated seat, and they will need to put it on again when leaving.

The game will take place 100 years after then-German champion Nuremberg played Union in the first match at the Stadion An der Alten Försterei in Köpenick on Aug. 7, 1920.

Nuremberg now plays in the second division after narrowly avoiding demotion to the third last season. Union is preparing for its second season in the Bundesliga after surviving its first.

It could be the last game Union plays in front of fans this year.

On Thursday, Chancellor Angela Merkel announced that a ban on large events was to be extended to Dec. 31, though it remains to be seen how this will affect sports events with small numbers of fans.

State governors’ chiefs of staff were to form a working group to consider the possibility of spectators at events and report their findings by the end of October. Health minister Jens Spahn previously said it would send the “wrong signal” to allow fans go to games when the number of new infections is rising.


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