Saturday 19 October 2019

Paris terror attacks: Germany team forced to stay at Stade de France and French side refused to leave them

Spectators invade the pitch of the Stade de France stadium after the international friendly between France against Germany
Spectators invade the pitch of the Stade de France stadium after the international friendly between France against Germany Newsdesk Newsdesk

The national teams of France and Germany both spent Friday night inside the Stade de France following the attacks on the French capital.

Germany were taken to the airport on Saturday morning to return home rather than returning to their hotel, which had been subject to a bomb threat earlier on Friday.

France's players refused to return to their homes as a show of solidarity with their opponents.

"The French said that they were staying as long as Germany had to stay," said the German Football Association's caretaker president Reinhard Rauball.

"That was an outstanding gesture of camaraderie."

The two teams learned of the attacks once the final whistle had been blown in a 2-0 win for the hosts.


Two explosions outside the Stade de France were felt inside the stadium, where those close to ground level reported they could feel the ground shake.

"The players were very afraid," said Germany's general manager Oliver Bierhoff. "We didn't want to take any risks and we didn't know either whether all routes would have been secure."

A group of minibuses did leave the stadium in the early hours of Saturday morning, but none of the players were on board.

Instead, they were sent out as a security measure, and to collect the players' belongings from the team hotel.

A flight was arranged to take the Germany squad back to Frankfurt and Munich on Saturday, with the players all given the day off.

The DFB are currently deciding whether or not a planned international friendly with the Netherlands on Tuesday in Hanover will go ahead.

"The game is planned to go ahead, but we've got to talk about it internally," said Bierhoff on the DFB's website.

"Our thoughts are with the victims and their relatives. We are just happy to have landed safely.

"The team, and the team behind the team, all acted incredibly professionally in solving this special situation."

A Germany team statement on read: "We came to Paris to do what connects us all - to play football, together, against one another and in friendship. To have an enjoyable evening together with our fans, to show sporting ambition, but particularly we came for a fair and peaceful encounter. We all looked forward to playing in the Stade de France, to have a great night of football, which ended up turning into a nightmare.

"It was a dull bang, which changed everything. It produced pictures that will remain in our heads for a long time. We spent the night doing a lot of thought-processing. We asked ourselves why something like this could happen? How is such inhumanity even possible? There were a lot of answers, but none that could explain these cowardly attacks. We lost a game of football on Friday evening. But nothing is as irrelevant as that right now."

French fans making their way from the Stade de France sang La Marseillaise as they were evacuated.

Dans un tunnel de sortie du Stade de France, sortie dans le calme.... Et la Marseillaise. #fier

Posted by Karl Olive on Friday, 13 November 2015

Online Editors

The Left Wing: Welcome to Irish rugby's biggest week - is an upset on the cards?

Editor's Choice

Also in Sport