The craziest moments from the Bundesliga as German football returns

Punch-ups, pitch-invading pigeons, 45-yard own-goals, kung-fu ‘keepers and runaway goats! The craziest Bundesliga moments as German football prepares its return

  • The Bundesliga is set to return to action after the suspension due to coronavirus 
  • The German top-flight has provided some memorable moments over the years 
  • Several mad incidents have occurred including punch-ups and invading pigeons 
  • Sportsmail has picked out some of the maddest moments from recent memory
  • Here’s how to help people impacted by Covid-19

All eyes turn to Germany this weekend where the Bundesliga will become the first major European league to resume football fixtures since the coronavirus suspension – no pressure.

Millions of football-starved fans will tune into BT Sport with Jadon Sancho, Erling Haaland and Robert Lewandowski some of the big names bound to attract interest.

But it’s not just the football that supporters can look forward to. The Bundesliga has a reputation for producing mad moments including 45-yard own goals and pitch-invading pigeons. 

The Bundesliga has produced some crazy moments in its history including huge punch-ups

There may be no German fans allowed into the stadium to create the usual atmosphere but quite often the players, or club mascots, are capable of creating the insanity all on their own. 

Sportsmail takes you through some of the craziest memories from the German top-flight over the years.  


Eintracht Frankfurt captain David Abraham created his very own Alan Pardew moment when he was sent off for knocking over Freiburg manager Christian Streich. 

Freiburg were leading 1-0 in stoppage time when the ball went out of play. In a routine piece of time wasting Streich let it go and stood in Abraham’s path as he ran to collect it. 

But instead of going round the manager, Abraham decided to send him flying with a forceful shoulder barge as he ran past.

This led to a mass brawl involving both benches as chaos ensued. Angry Freiburg staff and players chased Abraham onto the pitch and their assistant coach Florian Bruns was shown a yellow card while Vincenzo Grifo, who had already been substituted, was shown red after VAR picked him up targeting Abraham in the melee. 

Freiburg went on to win the game 1-0 while Abraham received a seven-week ban and was fined £21,410. A costly shoulder barge indeed.

Eintracht Frankfurt’s David Abraham caused a mass brawl after flooring Christian Streich

Streich was left floored after the defender shoulder barged him as he ran past to get the ball


Nothing like an own-goal to ruin an 18-game unbeaten run? 

Only Christoph Kramer didn’t just score an own-goal, his effort against Borussia Dortmund was, as the commentator put it, ‘sensational’.

Under seemingly no pressure, Kramer received the ball just inside his own half. He opted to play it back to his own goalkeeper – the safe choice.

Only he didn’t elect a straight forward pass along the floor. He instead went for a chip – forgetting that his ‘keeper had moved further up the pitch to play the ball out from the back in the first place.

Completely caught out, the shot-stopper tried to back peddle to reach Kramer’s beautifully weighted lob, but his efforts were pointless. The ball was destined for the back of the net.

Sadly for Kramer and Cologne the game finished 1-0 and the defeat ended their club-record 18-game unbeaten run. Dortmund manager Jurgen Klopp seemed quite pleased though. 

Christoph Kramer had a moment to forget when his pass ended up as a 45-yard own goal

The game finished 1-0 to Borussia Dortmund and ended Cologne’s 18-match unbeaten run


Everyone loves a pitch invader. Well, some people do. 

Dortmund’s 2-0 win over Wolfsburg in March 2019 wasn’t a classic but there was some much needed drama from an unexpected source.

A defiant pigeon decided he was going to join William Casteels in the Wolfsburg goal. The ‘keeper tried to usher the bird away but could not get it to move more than a few yards. 

The pigeon did however decide to explore the stadium and turned up around different parts of the pitch before settling back in between the familiar goalposts.

It even remained in the net for both of Paco Alcacer’s goals but made no attempt to make a save. 

Wolfsburg unsurprisingly didn’t take up the chance to sign it for another game.

The Borussia Dortmund pigeon defiantly remained on the pitch throughout the league game


All goalkeepers are crazy – it’s a saying that seems to have at least some truth, especially when it comes to German shot-stoppers.

Manuel Neuer is well known for venturing way out of his penalty area, sometimes successfully, others not so much. 

With Neuer now aged 34, Bayern Munich looked to bring in a capable shot-stopper to replace him in the future and fittingly they’ve found someone just as capable of causing chaos outside of his box.

Alexander Nubel will join Bayern from Schalke at the end of the season but his new club will be hoping he won’t repeat the kung fu kick he inflicted on Frankfurt midfielder Mijat Gacinovic.

The ‘keeper came rushing out of his goal to clear a through ball but completely missed the ball and instead planted his studs into the chest of his opponent who was sent crashing to the ground.

Incredibly, Nubel looked genuinely shocked when the red card was produced. He received a four-game ban and was fined £10,000.  

Alexander Nubel inflicted a kung fu style kick on Eintracht Frankfurt midfielder Mijat Gacinovic

The goalkeeper was shocked to get a red card but was later fined and banned for four games


We’re back to Cologne and their unusual club mascot – Hennes VIII the goat. 

Cologne – nicknamed The Billy Goats – have had their famous mascot since 1950, when they were handed a circus goat and named it after coach Hennes Weisweiler.

Hennes IX became Cologne’s mascot as of August 1, 2019, after Hennes VIII was retired by the club due to old age. But the retired goat attempted to make a getaway back in 2014. 

Okay, admittedly Cologne were still in Bundesliga 2 at this time but we couldn’t leave this one out. Perhaps Hennes was making an early break for the top-flight? 

The goat was let off its leash during half-time of the club’s fixture against Aalen but was keen to remain on the pitch for the second half. 

The stewards and club officials had a hard time catching the runaway goat and it’s fair to say Cologne fans were firmly on the animal’s side.

Unfortunately for new goat Hennes IX, strict health guidelines means the mascot is not able to be present for their fixture against Mainz on Sunday. It will be the first time Cologne are without their mascot since 2008.

Cologne’s goat Hennes VIII gave club staff the runaround when it broke free back in 2014

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