Refereeing the Revierderby in an empty Signal Iduna Park was 'challenging in another way', says Deniz Aytekin.
|Deniz Aytekin.||Photo: Viacheslav Evdokimov, fc-zenit.ru, CC BY-SA 3.0|
Deniz Aytekin was the referee for Saturday's Revierderby between Borussia Dortmund and Schalke 04, which was played behind closed doors due to the Bundesliga's strict hygiene guidelines.
Asked if he feels the peculiar circumstances made his job any easier, Aytekin told Kicker:
"No. I would say it was challenging in another way. Sure, there were situations on the pitch that would have been more hectic if there had been fans in the stadium. But in general, the game wasn't any less intense.
"At the same time, we impartial observers also need to find our rhythm after the long break. And as always, we're faced with the challenge of staying mentally present for 90 minutes and to not switch off a fraction of a second. Sometimes it can help if a little life comes in from the outside. After all, we are used to that."
Dortmund won the game 4-0 thanks to a brace from Raphael Guerreiro and a goal each from Erling Haaland and Thorgan Hazard.