Borussia Dortmund head coach Thomas Tuchel seemingly criticised UEFA for rescheduling the Champions League quarter-final first leg against Monaco less than 24 hours after an attack on their team bus.
Dortmund and Monaco kicked off at Signal Iduna Park on Wednesday to contest a match that was due to take place a day earlier until the Bundesliga side’s bus was damaged as three explosions occurred on their way from the team hotel to the ground.
Defender Marc Bartra was injured in the incident and underwent successful surgery on a fractured wrist.
Dortmund chief executive Hans-Joachim Watzke visited the team before kick-off and spoke defiantly of the club wishing to “show society that we will not bow to terror”, although Tuchel was in no mood to join in with the rallying call in a pre-match interview with Sky Deutschland.
“There are players who can easily deal with what’s happened and others who worry more – very mixed feelings,” Tuchel said.
“We wished we would have wished for more time to deal with what happened but someone in Switzerland decided we have to play.
“It’s not very fair. What happened yesterday happened to us as people. Every player has the right to start with a strange feeling.
“We’ve been left feeling a bit helpless by the decision. But professionals find solutions to problems. We are strong enough.”
Dortmund made an inauspicious start to the match, with Fabinho missing an early penalty for Monaco before Kylian Mbappe put the visitors in front amid strong suspicions of offside.
It got worse for Tuchel’s men when Sven Bender – selected in a back three in place of Bartra – headed into his own net.
— Champions League (@ChampionsLeague) April 12, 2017
Working as a pundit for Sky, former Germany international Lothar Matthaus claimed members of the Dortmund side did not want to play and made a more pointed criticism of UEFA than Tuchel.
“I heard from sources in the team, that many players did not want to play,” he said. “But UEFA is pressuring and the politics asks Dortmund to stand up against terror.
“To me it is irresponsible that the players have to be on the pitch. It is a incomprehensible decision by the UEFA to pressure Borussia Dortmund.”
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