Borussia Dortmund fans toss tennis balls on pitch in protest of ticket prices

Borussia Dortmund fans protested high ticket prices by throwing tennis balls on the pitch during their side's 3-1 win at Stuttgart in the DFB-Pokal on Tuesday.

Many of Dortmund's travelling supporters stayed away from the stand for the first 20 minutes in response to a €70 ticket price set by the hosts.

The "Kein Zwanni" fan group unfurled a banner that read Fussball muss bezahlbarsein, or "football must be affordable."

Following the boycott, some Dortmund fans threw tennis balls on to the field, forcing the referee to suspend the match while players helped remove the balls from the pitch.

The protests come in the same week that Liverpool fans walked out of their Premier League match in the 77th minute in response to increased ticket prices.

Despite the incident, Dortmund manager Thomas Tuchel praised his players as BVB benefitted from goals by Marco Reus, Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and Henrikh Mkhitaryan.

"In the situation of the opponent, in these circumstances, we have made a perfect game," said Tuchel, who was highly critical of the pitch condition.

"It was a great game, it was a great game to coach. It was as intense as expected.

"We were dominant in the first half and prevented early counter-attacks.

"In the second half it was a little more open, we allowed three of four chances on the break.

"We could have made the third goal earlier, but we did so under difficult conditions."