What the papers say: 'Players stumbled around like idiots'

After Monday night's 1-1 draw for the Werkself against FC Nürnberg there were two main subjects in the media: the wonder goal from Kai Havertz and the adverse to unusual conditions.

The Bild Zeitung came to the following conclusion: "Wonder goal in water fight: Havertz can lob over water." The report continues: "Shouldn't this game in the rain have been called off? Last night's Monday game between Nürnberg and Leverkusen (1-1). With every free kick and every challenge there was a splash like in a paddling pool. Funny to watch for neutrals. Water polo players couldn't be wetter. But were those really decent conditions for a football match? The Leverkusen management said: No! Managing director Rudi Völler (58): 'I went to see the referee Bibiana Steinhaus after the game. She said straight away it was playable. And you have to accept that. That was her decision.' Völler added: 'I'd have preferred it hadn't been played. I'd have said too if we'd have won 1-0. And I said that in front of witnesses when we were ahead at half-time. It was difficult enough before the break. The second half was nothing to do with football. There was too much down to chance.' Eurosport pundit Matthias Sammer took a similar position: 'From 55 to 60 minutes the conditions were unsatisfactory.' And the scorer of Nürnberg's equaliser Georg Margreitter was very honest: 'The conditions were in our favour. It would have been difficult to get a result against a team like that under normal conditions.'"

The Kölner Stadt Anzeiger described the state of the pitch as follows: "An end to dribbling at pace because invisible puddles suddenly sucked in the ball and made the player, who did everything right, stumble around like an idiot. At the same time, it was evident that quality football is capable of adapting to such special conditions quicker. Bayer 04 refused to let the rain dampen their desire to play, they found the halfway playable parts of the pitch and quickly created clear chances. Sven Bender hit the bar from a corner (10'). Bellarabi and Volland missed from tight angles. After half an hour came the deserved opener. Kevin Volland crossed the ball into the penalty area in a counter attack, goalkeeper Fabian Bredlow punched it to the feet of Kai Havertz, who saw a number of players in front of him. The only area  not covered was the right corner of the goal. And because Kai Havertz can do everything with the ball, he placed it with the instep of his left foot in the only place possible as if it was the easiest thing in the world. But if that really was the case then we would have seen a goal like that elsewhere."

The Kicker quotes Rudi Völler as follows: "The days of playing in snow or similar conditions should be over. It wasn't a football match in the second half. The spectators deserved something better."

And the Rheinische Post  sums it up: "Bayer 04 earn point over 90 minutes on the ground."

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