German Chancellor Angela Merkel announced tighter COVID-19 restrictions on Thursday ©Getty Images

The German Olympic Sports Confederation (DOSB) has called for greater protection of "popular sport" following tighter COVID-19 restrictions enforced in Germany.

On Thursday (December 3), outgoing German Chancellor Angela Merkel and her successor Olaf Scholz agreed to tighten rules across the country's 16 states,

Among the measures is a ban on unvaccinated people entering restaurants, cinemas, leisure facilities and many shops unless they have recently recovered from coronavirus.

Bundesliga matches, the domestic football league in Germany, will also be limited to 50 per cent capacity, while Merkel admitted vaccinations could be made mandatory by next February.

On Thursday, the DOSB said it is ready to work with Germany to arrest an increasing fourth wave, but also called on the Government to enact a "popular sport guarantee".

"In the current phase of the pandemic, we all have to do our part to break the fourth wave, and sport is of course ready for that too," said former said DOSB President Alfons Hörmann, who was replaced by Thomas Weikert yesterday. 

"However, there must not be a blanket and comprehensive sports lockdown again. 

"We are therefore calling for a popular sport guarantee for the 27 million members in the 90,000 sports clubs. 

"We can adhere to stricter rules with 2G, train in smaller groups and continue our vaccination campaigns in sports. 

"But the 'social filling stations' in our country, the sports clubs, must not be closed again."

DOSB President Alfons Hörmann ended his eight years in the role yesterday ©Getty Images
DOSB President Alfons Hörmann ended his eight years in the role yesterday ©Getty Images

Hörmann added: "As a result of the lockdown measures in 2020, around 800,000 members had ended their association membership. 

"The full effects of the third wave in winter 2020/2021 and the now rampant fourth wave will only come to light in the surveys of the next few years. 

"Especially for children and young people, but also for many adults, especially on these particularly difficult days, low-threshold exercise offers in the club are a valuable component for physical and mental health."

Germany is experiencing its biggest coronavirus waves of the pandemic, recording north of 70,000 daily cases in three of the first four days of December.

Hörmann has stepped down as DOSB President after eight years in the role.

Weikert replaced him in a landslide election, defeating Claudia Bokel, an Olympic fencing silver medallist and former International Olympic Committee (IOC) member, by 361 votes to 56.