Hamburg player in drink-drive incident | Sports| German football and major international sports news | DW | 22.02.2018
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Hamburg player in drink-drive incident

A young midfielder with Bundesliga club Hamburg could face a stretch behind bars following a car accident he allegedly caused on the autobahn. The club has said it could impose as significant penalty on the player.

German media reported on Thursday that 19-year-old Hamburg midfielder Vasilije Janjicic had been involved in an accident on the A7 autobahn in the northern city state overnight, and one person was lightly injured.

Police told the DPA news agency that Janjicic had been breathalyzed on the scene of the accident and was found to have 64 milligrams of alcohol per 100 mililiters – the legal limit in Germany is 50.

According to the police, although Janjicic is the owner of the Mercedes that he was driving when it crashed into another car after he had switched lanes to overtake, he did not have a valid license. Not just that, but he also initially attempted to pass himself off to police as his twin brother.

The southbound lanes of the autobahn were closed for three hours as a result of the accident, and police are continuing their investigation. A spokesperson for the Hamburg prosecutors office told DPA that given the circumstances surrounding the crash, Janjicic could face anywhere from a heavy fine to a maximum sentence of five years in jail.

Club bosses not amused

Hamburg have also threatened to punish the Swiss midfielder. Sporting director Jens Todt said in a statement on Hamburg's website that the club's management had made clear to him that his conduct was "irresponsible" and that he should expect to face "appropriate sanctions."

Janjicic conceded that he had made a "serious mistake" and apologized to others involved in the accident as well as "my teammates and Hamburg SV."

Janjicic has made six appearances for relegation-threatened Hamburg in the Bundesliga this season.

pfd/mds (dpa, SID)