BERLIN (Reuters) – Borussia Moenchengladbach secured a narrow 2-1 win over Cologne on Wednesday in the first Bundesliga game to be played in front of empty stands due to the outbreak of the coronavirus.
Breel Embolo slotted in on 32 minutes and an own goal from Jorge Mere from an Embolo effort in the 70th doubled Gladbach’s lead in a ghostly atmosphere at their cavernous Borussia Park stadium that is normally pulsating with crowds of 55,000.
Cologne pulled a goal back in the 81st through Mark Uth to inject some tension into a game that obviously lacked in atmosphere. The win lifted Gladbach to 49 points in fourth place, one behind third-placed RB Leipzig.
The game had been rescheduled after it was originally postponed last month due to a storm warning.
Germany’s Bundesliga matches this weekend will all be played behind closed doors with federal states banning events with crowds of more than 1,000 in order to contain the spread of the virus.
Champions Bayern Munich are top on 55 points, four clear of second-placed Borussia Dortmund.
(Reporting by Karolos Grohmann; Editing by Toby Davis)
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