Football fans desperate for their first fix of live games in more than two months have been left frustrated after the app showing the matches buckled under soaring demand.
The return of the German Bundesliga today has seen many supporters take out subscriptions with BT Sport, which owns the rights to broadcast the fixtures in the UK.
Top-flight football has been on hold since March as a result of the coronavirus pandemic, with the Bundesliga the first of Europe’s major divisions to restart competitive games.
Borussia Dormund take on Schalke in an empty stadium today as the German Bundesliga returns
Dortmund coaches Lucien Favre, left and Manfred Stefes, right, wear masks during their game this afternoon
A young Borussia Dortmund fan in the UK watches his team on television, as the league games are played for the first time in more than two months
Leipzig’s Tyler Adams, left, heads the ball over Freiburg’s Christian Guenter in a Bundesliga match in front of an empty stadium today
Fortuna Duesseldorf’s head coach Uwe Roesler wears a mask before his team’s match with SC Paderborn this afternoon
Borussia Dormund fans watch their game with FC Schalke 04 on a mobile device, with supporters not allowed to enter stadiums
Fixtures are being played in empty stadiums, with some members of coaching staff pictured wearing face masks.
However, dozens of exasperated fans took to Twitter this afternoon, complaining that they weren’t able to tune in for their first taste of live action in weeks.
One wrote: ‘Got excited to watch football again. But the BT app keeps crashing so I’ve had to give up. Gutted.’
Another said: ’25 quid came out of my account a few mins ago now but the website still says I need to upgrade and the app won’t let me log in. When can I watch some football?’
BT has been approached for comment.
Dozens of frustrated football fans took to Twitter to complain of trouble accessing live footage of the matches
The setting may be unfamiliar, but the identity of the day’s first goal-scorer was entirely familiar as Erling Braut Haaland put Borussia Dortmund ahead against Schalke.
Haaland diverted a low Thorgan Hazard cross into the far corner of the net in the 29th minute for the first goal of the five matches kicking off on Saturday afternoon on the long-awaited comeback of top-flight football in Europe.
It was a 10th goal in nine Bundesliga appearances for the prolific 19-year-old Norwegian striker, who moved to Dortmund from Red Bull Salzburg in the winter.
Usually the scorer of the first goal in the Ruhr derby between Dortmund and Schalke could expect to be mobbed by his teammates, but colleagues of Erling Haaland, pictured, respected social distancing recommendations and avoided getting too close
Renato Steffen and Paulo Otavio of VfL Wolfsburg celebrate a goal against FC Augsburg this afternoon with an ‘elbow bump’
Deniz Aytekin gestures during the match
Hertha’s Per Ciljan Skjelbred is helped by Hoffenheim’s Christoph Baumgartner, as play resumes behind closed doors
Usually the scorer of the first goal in the Ruhr derby – one of the biggest fixtures in German football – could expect to be mobbed by his teammates.
On this occasion, though, Haaland’s colleagues respected social distancing recommendations and avoided getting too close as they applauded the smiling and dancing goal-scorer.
Earlier today, four matches kicked off at midday in Germany’s second tier, and another four started 30 minutes later, with players carrying out as much of their pre-match ritual as is possible in the coronavirus pandemic before resuming the 2019-20 season.
Players took to the pitch before kick-off wearing masks to look out upon stadiums that will remain empty for the duration of their game, aside from cameramen wearing masks.
Football returned in Germany on Saturday, firstly through their second tier – Bundesliga 2
Darmstadt players head onto the pitch before their Bundesliga 2 match against Karlsruher
Schalke substitute players sit on the bench during the German Bundesliga soccer match between Borussia Dortmund and Schalke 04 in Dortmund
Masked cameramen were the only people watching on from the stands on Saturday
Frank Schmidt, Heidenheim head coach, is interviewed from a distance prior to kick-off
Microphones are wrapped in a plastic cover in order to halt the potential spread of Covid-19
Ball boys wore gloves while microphones used to interview players and managers had a protective film wrapped over the top of them before being connected to a two-metre pole.
Match balls were also sprayed with disinfectant, as well as the seats in the dugouts where coaches and substitutes will sit. And when those players took their place on the bench, they sat apart from each other to maintain social distancing.
Media were allowed in to cover matches but their temperatures were taken upon arrival for any signs of a fever – one of the symptoms of coronavirus.
Stewards stood outside of the stadiums wearing masks, some of which were branded with club colours.
TV crews in the stands were the extent of the crowd across German fixtures this weekend
Ball boys will wear gloves when football finally resumes across Germany on Saturday
Match balls were sprayed with disinfectant prior to games restarting in Bundesliga 2
Seats in the dugout were also sprayed and cleaned before coaches and substitutes sat there
One Bundesliga 2 match was postponed this weekend. Dynamo Dresden’s clash with Hannover was called off after two Dresden players tested positive for the virus and the whole team was ordered into a two-week lockdown by regional authorities.
‘When the decision from the top came that we could train and the games were about to start, we gathered the whole team and started normal sessions,’ Dresden’s striker Alexander Jeremejeff told the BBC.
‘We only did this for two days and then we had to go to this quarantine for two weeks. ‘
Media were allowed in to cover the Bundesliga 2 matches but had their temperatures checked
People enjoy drinks and do their shopping at Viktualienmarkt on May 16, 2020 in Munich
Stewards partolled the perimeter of stadiums with club-branded face masks on
People stand in a queue and walk along the pedestrian zone on May 16, 2020 in Munich