The German national team have kickstarted a fundraising initiative for the coronavirus epidemic by donating €2.5 million to social causes.
Germany were among the favourites for this summer’s European Championship, which has been postponed until 2021 as the pandemic continues to wipe out sporting fixtures.
The team are asking fans to make contributions of their own using wirhelfen.eu .
Speaking on Instagram, Germany captain Manuel Neuer said: “We have to look at each other in such times.”
A number of Neuer’s international team-mates also called for donations on social media.
“We all realise that we are in an absolutely exceptional situation. Each of us is affected,” added Bayern’s Joshua Kimmich:
“It is therefore important that we help and support each other. We should all be aware of our responsibility and show solidarity.”
The WirHelfen (WeHelp) website describes the resource as “your central point of contact for help in Germany.
“In times of need we are the digital phone book, which clearly shows you all neighbourhood aids in Germany on an interactive map and unites people looking for help and helpers.
“In emergency situations, many helpers are looking for a main point of contact through which they can offer their help simply and easily.
“At the same time, many people need support with everyday problems and want help quickly.
“WirHelfen is a non-profit portal that clearly and easily records all help offers and requests nationwide. Our focus is on concrete assistance, which is particularly needed in times of crisis. All without registration or complicated mediation.”
Leon Goretzka, also of Bayern, was another to sound the call for help, while he also posted on Instagram asking people to donate blood.
“I would like to ask you to do your part,” he said.
“We as the national team have gone ahead and donated €2.5m to a good cause and hope that many of you will follow.”
On Monday, Borussia Dortmund’s ‘Sudtribune Dortmund’ fan group said it would be providing help by offering to deliver shopping and other courier services to those affected by Covid-19 in the Dortmund area.
Meanwhile in the Premier League, Chelsea have announced that the Millennium Hotel at Stamford Bridge will be used for accommodation for National Health Service staff in west London.