On the day of its 50th anniversary, the Bundesliga saw eight players sent off on one match weekend -- a new record.
German FA (DFB) referee boss Herbert Fandel said the players were to blame and he believed “too many emotions are in play”. He told kicker: “We will get the hang of it together. Until then, a clear line is what we need.”
Five straight red cards and three for two yellow cards were handed out, with Stuttgart’s Ibrahim Traore becoming the last player to receive one in the Sunday match against Augsburg.
The weekend’s other cards saw Hoffenheim midfielder Sejad Salihovic dismissed for hitting Julian Schuster, while Freiburg’s Admir Mehmedi was dismissed for insulting the assistant referee.
Schalke captain Beneditkt Howedes was sent off for a professional foul in their game at Hannover, who later had to do without Szabolcs Huszti.
Schalke’s Austria international Christian Fuchs, Freiburg’s Francis Coquelin and Wolfsburg midfielder Luiz Gustavo were all dismissed after being shown two yellow cards.
In addition, Freiburg coach Christian Streich was sent to the stands after complaining about Coquelin’s second yellow card.
“Referees have the most difficult job on the pitch,” Streich said. “It’s no problem when they make wrong calls during heated games.
“But it is about proportionality, and when a player makes a fair challenge and gets his second yellow for that, which the opponent vehemently demands, then the whole game tips over. And that is beyond proportionality.”