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Euro 2024: Germany vs. Denmark interrupted by dazzling lightning storm

DORTMUND, Germany — Germany's Round of 16 clash with Denmark was sensationally — though briefly — stopped on Saturday night after Dortmund was besieged by a torrential weather storm.

With just over half an hour of the first half played, and the teams still scoreless, lightning and thunder lashed the field and caused referee Michael Oliver to order the teams to head back to their locker rooms.

Heavy weather had been predicted but the extent of the storm, with hailstones soon pelting the stadium roof and causing a deafening sound, took organizers by surprise.

[ Germany vs. Denmark live updates ]

As confusion reigned, an announcement was posted on the stadium board, in German, Danish, then English. "Due to adverse weather conditions, the match has been suspended," it read. "Further information will follow shortly."

Within minutes, the area around Manuel Neuer and Kasper Schmeichel's respective goals were sodden. Fans on the lower sections of the stands sought refuge higher up as the elements worsened.

Stadium staff tried to clear flooded concrete areas just behind the field, while several Denmark fans danced topless in the rain nearby.

Earlier, host nation Germany had been in form control, bombarding the Denmark goal and creating a series of early chances. Leroy Sane and Jamal Musiala both went close, with Schmeichel forced into a pair of smart saves.

Nico Schlotterbeck, coming into the side to replace the suspended Jonathan Tah, thought he had put his team ahead after four minutes, but his header was ruled out for a foul.

The winner of the clash plays Spain or Georgia in the quarterfinal.

The players reemerged at 9:56 p.m. local time, after being off for around 24 minutes. They were permitted a short warm-up, with