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Bayern München

Bayern have 12 players on pitch after incredible substitution mix-up during 4-1 win over Freiburg as match is temporarily stopped

18:37 SAST 2022/04/02
FC Bayern Freiburg Schiedsrichter 0422
A moment of confusion left the away side playing with 11 outfielders for around 20 seconds

Bayern Munich briefly played with 12 players on the pitch towards the end of their 4-1 thrashing of Freiburg on Saturday.

The Bavarians were already coasting two goals ahead when the incredible mix-up occurred in the final minutes of the Bundesliga clash.

That numerical irregularity was eventually resolved, causing a considerable delay to the end of the game.

What happened?

Just over 80 minutes of Saturday's game had been played when a late Bayern substitution led to chaos on the pitch.

Niklas Sule was sent into the action to replace Corentin Tolisso, who was forced off through illness having himself come on as a substitute.

The defender, however, came on before Kingsley Coman, who was subbed at the same time for Marcel Sabitzer, had been removed from the field, leaving Bayern momentarily with 11 outfielders.

A handful of seconds were played before the game was stopped and the appropriate number of footballers restored - and Sabitzer went on to add a fourth for the visitors before the final whistle.

"Niki Sule came in and I noticed that nobody went off," Freiburg defender Nico Schlotterbeck told Sky after the game.

"Then the game started again, I first counted the players and then informed the referee. If I hadn't done that, I think he wouldn't have noticed."

What caused the mistake?

According to Bayern coach Julian Nagelsmann, a mix-up with the electronic substitution boards was to blame, and as soon as the mistake was noted the away side moved to fix it.

Instead of Coman's No.11, the 29 came up, a number that does not belong to any of the Bayern squad.

"It was a vague situation. Coco [Tolisso] had stomach problems and ran into the dressing room. Coman didn't know he had to go off too and stayed on the pitch for eight to nine seconds. It was nothing game changing," he told reporters.

While it was only a short period of time, Freiburg were left furious by the confusion.

"That was an extremely bizarre scene that I have never experienced before. Does that have an impact? I cannot judge now," sporting director Jochen Saier fired.

"The referee evaluated it for a long time, then let play continue. Will Freiburg protest? We have to calm down now and think about it."

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