Thomas Tuchel has reiterated his opinion that Borussia Dortmund get fouled too often, but he is adamant he has never demanded a red card for any one.
The BVB coach questioned Bayer Leverkusen’s physical approach in the wake of their 2-0 Bundesliga defeat before the international break, causing somewhat of a stir with his comments.
Tuchel was criticised by Hertha Berlin boss Pal Dardai ahead of Friday’s encounter between the two sides, with the 40-year-old suggesting the Dortmund coach’s remarks could influence referees.
Nevertheless, Tuchel feels he did not do anything wrong by voicing his concerns.
“I am surprised that the discussion about fouls got blown out of proportion,” Tuchel said at a news conference.
“I merely read out the number of fouls on the stats sheet. I did not demand red cards or anything for anyone. All I criticised was the imbalance between fouls committed and received.
“In my opinion 20 fouls per match are way over the line. Despite all competitiveness, that is not how I think the game should be played.”
Dortmund are being plagued by injury problems heading into Friday’s match, with at least 10 first-team regulars unavailable, and Tuchel acknowledged he has some manoeuvring to do.
“Right now, it is questionable whether we will even have 16 senior players available,” the BVB boss added. “We will add some young players to the squad.
“Lukasz Piszczek and Adrian Ramos are out. As it stands, Marc Bartra is available, but we still have to decide whether he will play due to limited training sessions.
“[Pierre-Emerick] Aubameyang missed training for private reasons today but will play tomorrow.”