Borussia Dortmund defender Mats Hummels has set his sights on DFB-Pokal glory as they prepare to visit Hertha Berlin in the semi-finals on Wednesday.
Thomas Tuchel’s men have fallen seven points behind leaders Bayern Munich with four games to go in the race for the Bundesliga title, while they crashed out of the Europa League in sensational fashion at the hands of Liverpool last week.
The DFB-Pokal thus remains their only realistic chance of winning silverware this campaign and Hummels desperately wants to lift the German cup in Berlin come May 21.
“We put in a good performance against Hamburg at the weekend [in a 3-0 win] after the Europa League exit versus Liverpool. We were focused and solid,” Hummels was quoted as saying by Kicker.
“We now want DFB-Pokal glory. It’s our only remaining chance to win a trophy this season.
“We have to defend and attack as a team. That’s the way it is if you want to challenge for silverware in football.
“And we have done so quite well so far this season. Or we would not be sitting second in the Bundesliga title race and still have a chance to win the DFB-Pokal.”
Dortmund may have to make do without the services of star striker Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang on Wednesday, with the forward sustaining a foot injury in training on Monday.
Hertha, meanwhile, have been dreaming of DFB-Pokal success since the start of the season, with head coach Pal Dardai publicly voicing his cup ambitions on more than one occasion.
Dardai has not always been taken seriously by his critics, but Hertha are just one game away from the final on home soil and are keen to book their place in the showpiece on Wednesday.
“I have deliberately said right from the start of the season that I wanted to make it to the DFB-Pokal final. We all have the right to dream. If people laugh about it, that says something about them,” Dardai said at a media conference.
“Everybody at Hertha dreams of the DFB-Pokal. The entire team believes we can make it to the final. People will still talk about it in 20 years’ time if we win it.
“The club can take the next step. We want to become a force to be reckoned with again. Hertha should be among the six best teams in Germany.
“I hope we will meet Bayern in the final if we manage to beat Dortmund. It’s not a real final if Bayern are not in it.”
Hertha come into the game in fourth place and in with an excellent chance of qualifying for next season’s Champions League, although a run of one point from three matches is slight cause for concern.
The sides played out a scoreless draw in Berlin when they met in the Bundesliga earlier this campaign, while Dortmund recorded a 3-1 win at Signal Iduna Park.