Bayern Munich-Union Berlin called off due to snow chaos in southern Germany
MUNICH (AP) — Bayern Munich’s home game against Union Berlin was called off Saturday because of heavy snowfall.
Cold weather, snowfall and ice have caused transport chaos in Munich and southern Germany.
“It was decided not to play the game because of the security risks for all involved,” Union said in a statement 5 1/2 hours before the Bundesliga game was due to start.
The German soccer federation said that stadium management had made the decision not to host the game "due to persistent heavy snowfall.”
It came after a winter storm dumped snow across southern Germany and parts of Austria and Switzerland, affecting travel across the region.
“We very much regret that we have to postpone the match, but the safety of our fans and the supporters of Union Berlin has absolute priority,” said Bayern chief executive Jan-Christian Dreesen, who referred to the "numerous road closures and various public transport cancellations.”
Flight operations at Munich airport were canceled until 6 a.m. Sunday, and numerous railway lines around Munich had to be closed. News agency dpa reported that some passengers in Munich and the nearby city of Ulm spent Friday night on trains because of the service suspensions.
The Union team had been in Munich since Thursday after traveling directly there from its Champions League game at Braga in Portugal on Wednesday.
Club spokesperson Katharina Brendel said the team and staff were already on their way home Saturday using a combination of "bus, car and mini-bus."
With Bundesliga leader Bayer Leverkusen not playing until Sunday, Bayern had been hoping to move provisionally atop the standings on Saturday with a win over Union, which is on a 15-game winless run across all competitions.
Leverkusen is due to host Borussia Dortmund on Sunday.
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