Madonna causes Bundesliga match cancellation

Friday night's Bundesliga football match between Eintracht Frankfurt and Karlsruhe SC has been cancelled because the pitch was damaged during pop star Madonna's concert last week.

Madonna causes Bundesliga match cancellation
Football fans, Madonna hates you. Photo: DPA

The Frankfurt Commerzbank Arena field was destroyed during the concert for Material Girl’s “Sticky and Sweet” tour and it was replaced with new sod shortly thereafter. But on Friday morning referee Thorsten Kinhöfer and officials from the German Football Association (DFL) inspected the virgin field and concluded it was unsafe for players.

“I didn’t realize that a concert could have such an impact,” head of Eintracht Frankfurt, Heribert Bruchhagen said of the cancellation. “We have to respect this, even when we aren’t happy about it. But it’s not easy to let 48,000 fans know that we won’t play,” he said, adding that the team was offering ticket refunds for fans.

A rematch has not yet been scheduled, and Karlsruhe SC trainer Edmund Becker said he was irritated with the decision. “It’s a mess that the match was cancelled on short notice,” Becker said. “There was talk of a cancellation yesterday, but we were assured that we would play no matter what. The way things have gone is incomprehensible for us.”


Emergency numbers fail in several German states

Callers to the emergency numbers 110 and 112 weren’t able to reach operators Thursday morning in several German states.

The 112 emergency number on an ambulance.
The 112 emergency number on an ambulance. Photo: picture alliance/dpa | Boris Roessler

The emergency number 110 for police and 112 for fire crews failed around the country early Thursday morning, with callers unable to reach emergency operators for urgent assistance between about 4:30 am and 5:40 am local time.

The Office for Civil Protection and Disaster Aid is looking into these outages, which were reported in states including Lower Saxony, Baden-Württemberg, and  Brandenburg, and in major cities like Berlin, Cologne, Hamburg, and Frankfurt. Cologne was further affected by cuts to electricity, drinking water, and regular telephone services. Lower Saxony also saw disruptions to the internal phone networks of police and hospitals.

Emergency services are not reporting any more disturbances and people should be able to once again reach 110 and 112 around the country as normal.

Investigators are looking into the problem, but haven’t yet established a cause or any consequences that may have happened due to the outage. Provider Deutsche Telekom says they have ruled out the possibility of an attack by hackers.