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Bielefeld's supporter: Fabian Klos

Photo: Corinna Beck / Rene Schulz / rscp-photo / IMAGO

With tears in his eyes, Arminia Bielefeld's club icon Fabian Klos wished for his club far away from the place of double shame: "My son celebrated his first birthday at home," said Klos with a breaking voice after the 0-4 (0-1) disaster of the East Westphalians in the first second division relegation game at third-division club Wehen Wiesbaden, which was overshadowed by heavy fan riots: "And that's why I missed it."

Klos would certainly have had more fun with his filius Marlo than in Wiesbaden. Without a spark of hope ("The thing is through"), the veteran, who has been playing on the Alm since 2011, dismantled his disappointing team before the second leg on Tuesday (20.45 p.m. / Sky and Sat.1). After all, it was thanks to Klos and his speech to the angry Bielefeld fans that the game was not rigorously ended after an interruption of more than 20 minutes.

"I can't say what I think, because I'm captain of the team, but that's not a team," Klos said later on the Sat.1 microphone and added in front of the Sky camera: "I can't stand in front of this so-called team, because you have to rightly deny the character of this team."

So desolate was Bielefeld's minus performance just five days after the 0-4 defeat in the last league game at 1 FC Magdeburg that Klos almost understood the anger of the Arminia supporters and the firing of rockets and firecrackers after conceding goals from Ivan Prtajin (6th), Johannes Wirtz (50th), Benedict Hollerbach (60th) and John Iredale (82nd): "Should I be mad at the fans? They're just reacting to what we show on the pitch."

Because of the massive riots, referee Benjamin Brand had sent both teams to the locker rooms shortly before the end. The game was interrupted for 21 minutes after Bielefeld supporters repeatedly shot pyrotechnics at the pitch and some even tried to storm the pitch.

"A firecracker hit two meters next to me. That was extremely dangerous. I've never experienced anything like it. I was scared," said Wehen Wiesbaden striker Benedict Hollerbach about the scandalous incidents. It was only when the police marched in front of the away fan block that things continued. "The referee said that if another firecracker exploded, he would stop the game," Klos later reported.

Probably no impact on the second leg

Arminia is now threatened with drastic punishment by the German Football Association. However, Bielefeld do not have to fear any effects for the second leg on Tuesday due to the shortness of time. This is entirely in the spirit of Wehen Wiesbaden's coach Markus Kauczinski. "I'm not interested in an empty stadium. I don't want a ghost game," said the 53-year-old. However, he called on those responsible for the East Westphalians to work with the fans to ensure that the game was played safely.

Without dreaming of a huge football miracle, Bielefeld, which officially apologized "for what happened on and off the pitch", is likely to be passed from the Bundesliga to the third tier within twelve months on Tuesday. Since the introduction of the single-track 3rd league, such a crash had only happened to Arminen's neighbour SC Paderborn in 2016.

In Bielefeld, after »tears, blood, sweat and broken bones«, Klos comes full circle: »I've come back to where I started twelve years ago – only the mood is even shittier than it was then.« The sporting end is apparently not yet reached for Fabian Klos, he also wants to go to the 3rd league. "I'm not going to stop like this," the footballer said on Friday evening.