Last week, the Frankfurt City Health Authority granted permission for up to 10,000 spectators to attend Eintracht Frankfurt's friendly against AS Saint-Étienne at Deutsche Bank Park on Saturday 31 July (kick-off 15.30 CEST), although some conditions were also attached to the approval.
Given that the seven-day incidence rate in Frankfurt subsequently rose above 35, at least 50 per cent of the spectators, i.e. 5,000 people, would have to be vaccinated or recovered (2G). Eintracht Frankfurt's legal advisor, Philipp Reschke, described this measure as a “good compromise in the right direction” to somewhat reduce the sole dependence of permissible maximum capacities on “incidence rates that are too rigid or have little meaning”.
However, on Sunday the Hessian Ministry for Social Affairs and Integration – the highest health authority in the state of Hesse – stated that such an interpretation of the current directives by the Frankfurt Health Authority was not correct and stressed that the number of 5,000 spectators was the absolute maximum, including vaccinated and recovered spectators. Eintracht Frankfurt were subsequently notified of a new amended ruling regarding the admission of a maximum of 5,000 spectators for the match against Saint-Étienne.
We remain prepared to have the announced restriction of 5,000 spectators reviewed by the administrative courts, but we hope that the factual and legal opinion of the City of Frankfurt will prevail.Philipp Reschke, Eintracht Frankfurt's legal advisor
Eintracht Frankfurt would seek interim legal protection against such a decision in the Frankfurt administrative courts.
However, as of Monday evening there was no reason to do, as the City of Frankfurt published a press release late in the afternoon stating that it saw no legal basis for withdrawing the previous permit of 10,000 spectators.
“We agree with the opinion of the head of the Health Authority, Stefan Majer, both from a factual and a legal point of view,” said Reschke. “And of course we remain prepared to have the announced restriction of 5,000 spectators reviewed by the administrative courts, but we hope that the factual and legal opinion of the City of Frankfurt will prevail. Looking ahead to Saturday, however, it will probably be a waiting game for our supporters in particular.”
Information on advance ticket sales for the match against Saint-Étienne will be published on Tuesday.