Who is to blame for FC Bayern’s mistake in substitution and what’s next? An overview of what happened in Munich’s 4-1 win at SC Freiburg.
Eleven against eleven, 90 minutes: two basic rules of football that didn’t apply to the Bundesliga game between SC Freiburg and FC Bayern Munich on Saturday. Due to a mistake made by the guests, they played with twelve men for a short time, which ultimately extended the game by 48 hours. Until Monday afternoon, the guests now have time to object to the rating.
According to his own information, Freiburg coach Christian Streich would gladly waive this responsibility. In fact, the DFB sports court only deals with the case if the people of Freiburg actively object. In doing so, they might gain three points, but at the same time lose sympathy points. The few seconds advantage at the score of 3:1 for FC Bayern had no influence on the game.
Freiburg board member Jochen Saier emphasized immediately after the game that his club would “think” about possible steps. What happens if Freiburg actually turns on the DFB sports court?
Interview with DFB instructor Lutz Wagner: “Referee’s mistake is undeniable”
Bayern’s change mistakes: These paragraphs come into question
Loud image 500 euros would have to be deposited first. Only then would the association deal with the question of which regulations or rules were broken in the first place. Paragraph 17, paragraph 4 of the legal and procedural regulations of the DFB and football rule 3, paragraph 7, come into question.
The former involves the use of a “player who is not eligible to play or use”. The club concerned is threatened with a penalty verification of the game with 0: 2, as happened when VfL Wolfsburg made a mistake in substitution against Preußen Münster in a DFB Cup game last August.
This only comes into play if the club concerned, like Wolfsburg at the time, is blamed in full. Their coach Mark van Bommel mistakenly substituted a sixth player. Incidentally, the verdict was announced about a week after the appeal.
Football rule 3 was also discussed when Wolfsburg made a mistake, and ex-referee Manuel Gräfe, among others, referred to it in vain. That rule deals with entering the field of play unlawfully by “a team official, a substitute, a substituted or sent off player or a third party”.
What could happen in the event of a Freiburg objection
According to the referee experts from “Collinas Erben”, a reference to this rule in a Freiburg appeal would be the most likely case. Felix Zwayer, who acted as VAR for the game, takes a similar view. “The player who was on the pitch too much was a fundamentally eligible player,” Zwayer told dem ZDF. “It’s in the football rules and not in the statutes or anything else that regulates how to deal with it.”
Should that happen, FC Bayern would not be threatened with defeat at the green table. The referee is responsible for complying with the football rules. According to “Collinas Erben”, in the event of an infringement, the sports court deals with the question of what influence this had on the outcome of the game. In this case none, which is why there should be no consequences. In any case, if a football rule is broken, only a repetition of the game would be possible, no penalty verification.
Change error: Similar case in the Oberliga
There was a similar case in October 2021 in a league game between FSV 08 Bietigheim-Bissingen and FC Nöttingen (2-1). At that time, two new players, Roman Kasiar and Ibish Sejdijaj, mistakenly ran onto the field for the replaced Bissinger Konstantinos Markopoulos. The error was noticed after 16 seconds, after which one of the two substitutes left the field.
During the majority, however, a quite relevant scene had happened, namely Jimmy Marton from Nottingen was sent off with a red card. Nottingen lodged an objection, but this was dismissed. The red card was not enough for the sports court to repeat the game. This precedent makes it unlikely that Freiburg will succeed in the event of a possible appeal after the completely meaningless game sequence against FC Bayern.
FC Bayern change mistakes: The role of Kathleen Krüger
Directly after the game, referee Dingert at least partially blamed FC Bayern and their team manager Kathleen Krüger. “It was a totally confused situation because the wrong number was displayed in Bayern’s double substitution,” he said. When Coman was substituted, Krüger passed his old 29 on to the fourth official Arno Blos instead of his current number 11, which is why the player did not feel addressed.
Freiburg’s only chance of success would be if the DFB sports court saw this mistake as just as serious as van Bommel’s sixth change. Whether the shirt number that was passed on incorrectly is actually sufficient for a reference to paragraph 17, paragraph 4 of the DFB’s legal and procedural rules seems extremely questionable.
Incidentally, when Coman switched from 29 to 11 last summer, Krüger was on a baby break. After a break of almost six months, she only celebrated her comeback on the sidelines of FC Bayern at the start of the second half of the season – and since then has correctly initiated one or two Coman changes.
“What happened happened as a result of several unfortunate circumstances. As for Kathleen Krüger, we are all happy that she has been our team manager for years,” Bayern sports director Hasan Salihamidzic told the media group on Sunday Munich Mercury/tz.
DFB: Dingert and his team come into focus
Ultimately, however, the referee is responsible for making a change, as VAR Zwayer explained: “In fact, it is always the responsibility of the referee team to make a change in accordance with the rules. In practice, that is the job of the fourth official. He makes sure that the player to be substituted leaves the field, he watches it and lets the substitute enter.”
Referee chief Lutz Michael Fröhlich resigned sports1 accordingly an “internal processing”. “It has something to do with concentration and overview. We have to talk to the referees about that again internally.” Dingert and his team of referees were already in action when Wolfsburg made a mistake in Münster.