Borussia Dortmund fans turned to tennis balls to demonstrate against high ticket prices, interrupting their side’s DFB-Pokal win over Stuttgart on Tuesday night with an unusual protest.
After boycotting the first 20 minutes of the cup tie at Stuttgart’s Mercedes-Benz Arena, where they were upset at having to pay upwards of 19.50 euros for a ticket, the fans entered the arena to throw numerous tennis balls onto the field of play.
Players from both sides helped to clear the field and ensure play was not halted for too long.
Dortmund fan Marc Quambusch, a member of the campaign group behind the protest, explained to the BBC the significance of tennis balls.
He says Germans use the expression “great tennis” to describe something very good, so the fans were being ironic.
Quambusch told Radio 5 live: “It was an idea to make it clear that enough is enough.
“When it comes to standing tickets, it’s OK. But you don’t have so many standing tickets. It’s not cheap, in a way.”
Stuttgart defended the price of tickets by saying that they were exactly the same as for their Bundesliga fixture with Dortmund, and unchanged since 2012/13.
Dortmund went on to win the game 3-1 and book their place in the semi-finals of the cup.