Borussia Dortmund teenager Gio Reyna became the youngest scorer in DFB-Pokal history on Tuesday.

Reyna, 17, made history with his stunning solo goal as Dortmund bowed out of the competition following a 3-2 third-round loss to Werder Bremen.

The American sensation – a second-half substitute –received the ball outside of the penalty area and weaved past two opponents before curling a shot into the top corner of the net.

Reyna's 78th-minute strike had made it 3-2 away to Bremen, who raced to a 2-0 lead prior to fellow teenager Erling Haaland taking his tally to eight goals in four matches since joining Dortmund.

Haaland's 67th-minute effort had given Dortmund hope until Bremen restored their two-goal advantage three minutes later.

''The first-half performance was poor. We were lacking tempo in our play. We seemed to be late to every ball and come out worse in every tackle," said Dortmund head coach Lucien Favre.

"Getting knocked out is very disappointing for all of us. It's a real shame. We had three or four big chances towards the end and could well have ended up achieving our objective.''

Dortmund defender Mats Hummels added: ''We didn't have enough depth in our play in the first half, which is something we need if we want to find spaces in behind. This made it easy for Werder and, when you add our defensive errors in the build-up to their goals, it meant we gave them the initiative in the match.

"It was far from a vintage performance from us tonight, but we didn't play all that badly either. We had enough chances to find an equaliser. I thought the result was fair overall. Congratulations to Werder.'' 

Mats Hummels has called for Borussia Dortmund to find their voice and become a big noise again after admitting the team can be "a bit quiet".

It is coming up to 23 years since Dortmund won their only Champions League title, and almost seven years since they last reached the final of Europe's top club competition.

Domestically, they have been left standing by Bayern Munich's dominance of the Bundesliga, with Dortmund's back-to-back titles in 2011 and 2012 followed by seven in a row by the Bavarians.

Hummels swapped Bayern for Dortmund last June, joining for a second spell with the club, and the former BVB club captain believes that, as a senior figure in Lucien Favre's squad, he can play a motivating role.

"I try to fill the role with life and take responsibility. Especially on the pitch where I verbally drive, order and cheer," he said.

"It is already an issue in our team that sometimes we are a bit quiet. That is why it is very important that the leaders stand up."

Dortmund headed into the final round of Champions League group games with their last-16 hopes in the balance, targeting a home victory over Slavia Prague on Tuesday and hoping for Barcelona to deny Inter three points at San Siro.

Centre-back Hummels, who turns 31 next week, knew Dortmund could not afford a sleepy performance if they were to achieve their ambitions.

He told DAZN: "Parts of us sometimes have to be woken up a bit in the game. The 4-0 against Leverkusen [in September] sounds clear, but in fact we had big problems in the first 20 minutes.

"We sometimes go into the games and see how it works. Sometimes we turn the switch over only when there is no other way.

"If we get that under control, we can be a top team. But that is not a thing you change in one or two days. We have to work it out for ourselves. When you look at the training sessions, there has been a development in recent weeks: mentality, attitude and sharpness."

Dortmund sit third in the Bundesliga, having slipped off the pace in November when thumped 4-0 by Bayern and held 3-3 by Paderborn, yet a 5-0 weekend win over Fortuna Dusseldorf, achieved without the suspended Hummels, showed what potential they have.

"We just look at our performances - and they were very changeable in the current season. But nothing is lost yet," Hummels said.

"In the Bundesliga, no team really marches ahead. This is mainly because the level - and I see that contrary to what is often written - clearly increases. The small teams no longer travel to Dortmund or Munich to be shot down. They have become much stronger tactically and individually and have a clear plan. That's why the well-known teams lose many more points."

Mats Hummels insists there are no problems between himself and under-fire Borussia Dortmund head coach Lucien Favre.

Dortmund snapped a winless run of three matches in all competitions by beating Hertha Berlin 2-1 last Saturday, despite Hummels receiving a 45th-minute red card in the German capital.

On their return from last month's international break, BVB were forced to come from 3-0 down to claim a 3-3 draw at home to bottom side Paderborn.

Speaking after that match, Hummels appeared to question Favre's initial defensive setup when he said:  "Let's just put it this way, it would be easier to press in a 4-1-4-1 and I'll leave it at that."

But the 2014 World Cup winner told Sport Bild he remains behind former Borussia Monchengladbach and Nice boss Favre.

"There are no differences with the coach, this is nonsense," he told Sport Bild.

"We have a very good relationship and we talk a lot, we talk a lot.

"I like his ideas, I am very surprised if they interpret my words as criticising the coach. I do not think so at all."

Specifically addressing his post-Paderborn comments, Hummels added: "If we have to press and press, my opinion is that we are better in this system.

"I feel that the coach had the same impression against Paderborn, otherwise he would not have switched to it."

Bayern are fifth in the Bundesliga, five points behind leaders Gladbach heading into their weekend match against Fortuna Dusseldorf.

Mats Hummels said Lionel Messi is the best footballer he has ever seen after the Barcelona superstar ran Borussia Dortmund ragged in the Champions League.

Messi scored once and assisted two others as Barca eased past Dortmund 3-1 and into the last 16 at Camp Nou on Wednesday.

It was a memorable 700th Barca outing for Messi, who set up Luis Suarez for the 29th-minute opener before his team-mate returned the favour four minutes later.

Five-time Ballon d'Or winner Messi then teed up substitute Antoine Griezmann with 23 minutes remaining to cap a stellar display, prompting high praise from Dortmund defender Hummels.

"In top form, Messi is the best footballer I have ever seen – period," Hummels, who gave the ball away for Messi's goal, said post-game.

"We were not good enough to beat Barcelona today. We only created three or four real chances."

Hummels added: "It was not a bad game, but not a very good one. Barcelona were excellent though. Messi is always dangerous, of course.

"We had a really bad spell after that first goal, with my bad pass that led to their second goal."

The result left Dortmund third and level on seven points with second-placed Inter heading into the final matchday in Group F.

Dortmund face Slavia Prague on December 10, while Inter welcome group winners Barca to Milan on the same day.

Lucien Favre reiterated his demand for renewed focus from Jadon Sancho despite the Borussia Dortmund sensation's goalscoring display off the bench against Barcelona in the Champions League.

Sancho was named among the substitutes before coming off the bench in the second half to reduce the deficit in Dortmund's 3-1 defeat to Barca at Camp Nou on Wednesday.

Favre dropped Sancho – who was also hauled off in the first half of a 4-0 Klassiker rout at the hands of Bayern Munich earlier this month – for the midweek showdown after telling Sky Sports pre-game: "We need players on the pitch who are focused and ready".

The 19-year-old's axing prompted fresh questions over his future amid growing links to Manchester United, Liverpool, Barcelona and Real Madrid.

After goals from Luis Suarez, Lionel Messi and Antoine Griezmann put the Group F contest beyond reach, Sancho provided a reminder of his immense quality with a fierce 77th-minute strike.

Asked why Sancho was benched post-match, head coach Favre told reports: "I explained it before starting the game.

"I needed very focused players to press and that's why I named that XI."

Dortmund team-mate Mats Hummels was also quizzed on England international Sancho and he said: "I don't want to talk about it. He played really well in the second half, was really involved and scored a great goal."

The result leaves Dortmund third and level on seven points with second-placed Inter heading into the final matchday.

Dortmund face Slavia Prague on December 10, while Inter welcome Group F winners Barca to Milan on the same day.

"The last 20 minutes were really good, we scored and could have scored when it was 2-0," Favre, who is under growing pressure at the club, added. "We then are in a one-on-one situation in defence, and that's tough when you are up against Suarez and Messi.

"It's difficult to play here, they have many players who can make the difference. It's a very tricky phase for us at the moment, but I am convinced we can manage to turn things around."

Marco Reus and Mats Hummels are still yet to return to training for Borussia Dortmund.

Club captain Reus sat out of Wednesday's 2-1 DFB-Pokal win over Borussia Monchengladbach with a muscular injury.

The Germany forward had only returned from a bout of illness ahead of last weekend's 0-0 Revierderby draw at Schalke and centre-back Hummels is now laid low with a sickness bug of his own.

Goalkeeper Roman Burki, who has also been ill, is back working with his team-mates ahead of Saturday's Bundesliga game against Wolfsburg at Signal Iduna Park.

"Roman Burki trained and is feeling good. Marco Reus and Mats Hummels did not. We still have to wait on their progress," head coach Lucien Favre said.

Julian Brandt could be called upon to start if Reus remains sidelined and Favre praised the former Bayer Leverkusen star, who scored for the first time since the opening weekend of the Bundesliga season with a brace to down Gladbach.

"Julian Brandt stood tall and played a great game from [attacking] midfield," he said. "Not only did he score two goals, he also effectively helped out in defence."

Dortmund lie fifth in the Bundesliga, a point and a place behind Wolfsburg after nine matches.

Antoine Griezmann scored his fourth goal in eight LaLiga appearances for Barcelona as the Spanish champions beat Eibar 3-0, and he leads the line in this week's FIFA 20 FUT Team of the Week.

The France World Cup winner is joined by an all-star cast in this week's line-up, including Paris Saint-Germain's in-form winger Angel Di Maria.

After scoring twice in his side's 4-1 victory at Nice in Ligue 1, Di Maria was in scintillating form as PSG beat Club Brugge 5-0 in the Champions League.

Not all of this week's selection are competing towards the top of their respective domestic leagues, with Watford's Abdoulaye Doucoure earning a place for his goal-scoring performance in the Premier League basement club's 1-1 draw with Tottenham.

Monaco are 14th in Ligue 1 and they will need more of the same from Wissam Ben Yedder if they are to turn their season around - he scored a brace in their 3-2 win over Rennes.

Find out who else made FIFA's Ultimate Team line-up below.

FUT Team of the Week

GK: Stephane Ruffier (Saint-Etienne) - 86

CB: Mats Hummels (Borussia Dortmund) - 88

CB: Marcos Alonso (Chelsea) - 84

CB: Yerry Mina (Everton) - 82

CM: Dani Parejo (Valencia) - 87

CAM: Taison (Shakhtar Donetsk) - 84

CM: Abdoulaye Doucoure (Watford) - 84

RW: Radja Nainggolan (Cagliari) - 85

LW: Antoine Griezmann (Barcelona) - 90

RW: Angel Di Maria (PSG) - 87

ST: Wissam Ben Yedder (Monaco) - 85

SUBSTITUTES

GK: Alfred Gomis (Dijon) - 81

CB: William Troost-Ekong (Udinese) - 81

CDM: Tomas Soucek (Slavia Prague) - 82

LM: Petros Mantalos (AEK Athens) - 81

ST: Lautaro Martinez (Inter) - 84

ST: Angel (Getafe) - 82

LW: Jack Grealish (Aston Villa) - 81

RESERVES

LM: Mislav Orsic (Dinamo Zagreb) - 79

LM: Jordan Morris (Seattle Sounders) - 78

ST: Andreas Cornelius (Parma) - 80

ST: Daniel Candeias (Genclerbirligi) - 79

ST: Henok Goitom (AIK) - 78

Joachim Low's decision not to select Mats Hummels for Germany must be accepted, according to former Borussia Dortmund player and coach Jorg Heinrich.

Hummels was suddenly dropped from the national team in March, along with his then Bayern Munich team-mates Thomas Muller and Jerome Boateng.

The centre-back subsequently rejoined Dortmund from Bayern and has been in fine form in the early weeks of the 2019-20 Bundesliga season.

Low, though, has continued to leave Hummels out of his squad despite defensive injuries affecting his latest selection, with Freiburg's Robin Koch called up for the first time.

"Jogi Low has his strategy with dealing with this topic," Champions League winner Heinrich told Omnisport. "When Hummels played in Munich it was not a big topic for us.

"Now he's playing very well for BVB and everybody would be happy to see him in the DFB shirt, but in the end it's a decision of Joachim Low and we have to respect that."

Low has turned to youth in a bid to inspire a turnaround in Germany's fortunes after flopping at Russia 2018, where their World Cup defence ended in the group stages.

"Joachim Low is very courageous to work with such a lot of young, talented players," former Germany international Heinrich added.

"It's not an easy situation after the great success we had in 2014 to build a new team.

"He's doing very well. We have very, very talented players in Germany that have to play at a high level to improve. We're looking in a very positive way."

Marc-Andre ter Stegen is as good as Manuel Neuer but the Bayern Munich star deserves to stay as Germany's goalkeeper, says Christian Ziege.

Barcelona goalkeeper Ter Stegen and Neuer were embroiled in a spat last month after the former said it was a "massive blow" not to feature against Netherlands or Northern Ireland, two games his more experienced team-mate started.

The Bayern captain accused Ter Stegen of being unhelpful by expressing his frustrations publicly, while club president Uli Hoeness threatened to withdraw his team's players from Germany duty before backtracking on his comments.

For Ziege, though, it is clear Neuer should keep the gloves although the number two deserves more opportunities to show what he can do for Germany.

"Manuel Neuer is the goalkeeper who is number one with us," former Germany international Ziege told Omnisport. "He proves that in a great way.

"There's no question that if Manuel Neuer can't play, Marc-Andre Ter Stegen is an incredible goalkeeper, just as good. 

"Everything he said he won't have said because he felt like it. But with certainty, because something was promised to him that was not kept.

"Ter Stegen proved what a team-mate and team player he is. That he didn't say a single word about Manuel Neuer being in goal despite eight or nine months of injury without a game in front of the tournament [World Cup]. He didn't say anything. Didn't complain.

"Of course he would have liked to play, but he didn't say anything. And now he said once and gave free rein to his emotional life that he is not satisfied with it. Which I think is quite normal. He didn't attack anyone. What became of it, I did not understand at all.

"And again, there are no two opinions. Manuel Neuer is a top goalkeeper and there is no need to question him. Nevertheless, you can handle it in such a way that the other goalkeeper, who is world class, also gets his play time. There are enough possibilities for that."

While Ziege backed Low's decision to stick with Neuer as his regular goalkeeper, he feels the Germany coach was too hasty to drop Mats Hummels, Thomas Muller and Jerome Boateng from the national squad.

"I think the decisive thing is that if you make changes – the changes have to be at least as good as before or even better which would be ideal," Ziege added. "Now we come to the problem because this is not the case.

"We have good players, but right now no players who are better. And you see this now – Mats Hummels is an extraordinary centre-back, Jerome Boateng as well. And Muller is someone who can always play for the national team as long as he is fit and having fun even if he doesn’t start.

"They did it the same way with [Lukas] Podolski. Muller is good enough to play for half an hour and I think it would be okay for him to do this for some years. Therefore I have the impression that a few players in the squad right now are bit over-rated.

"Regarding Hummels I have already said it I think that if you make changes then the players have to be as good as before at least. Niklas Sule is a very, very good centre-back but from my point of view I think he is not yet able to lead and stabilise this team.

"It would help him a lot to have someone next to him with a lot of experience, so that he is not the only one in the spotlight and everyone tells him, 'You are the one to do this'. He is not there yet, from my point of view."

Daniel Van Buyten believes Borussia Dortmund still must prove they can stay the course in a potential Bundesliga title race, despite strengthening their squad.

After a busy close season that included the return of Mats Hummels from Bayern Munich, Dortmund are tipped to push the reigning champions all the way in the 2019-20 season.

Thorgan Hazard, Julian Brandt and Nico Schulz have also arrived to bolster Lucien Favre's options, with Van Buyten impressed by the way they performed in the 0-0 Champions League draw against Barcelona last week.

However, while he expects them to challenge Bayern once again after finishing second in the previous campaign, the Belgian needs to see if BVB have the depth required to cope when their resources are stretched.

"Borussia Dortmund made very good transfers and they are a good team on the pitch," Van Buyten told Omnisport.

"They will definitely be a team that will fight for the championship in the Bundesliga until the end. But there are still one or two other teams that will also play for the title.

"Against Barcelona they [Dortmund] have also shown in the Champions League that they can play good games there – but they have to show that in Barcelona as well.

"As I said, things are looking good at the moment, but you have to see how things go from there.

"If there are injuries or illnesses, then you have to show that the squad is there and that the other players can also be successful."

Bayern strengthened their squad by signing Philippe Coutinho on a season-long loan from Barcelona – and the Brazilian scored his first goal in Saturday's 4-0 triumph over Cologne.

Van Buyten, though, has warned his old club not to expect too much from Coutinho, with any success in the Champions League down to teamwork, rather than relying on individual talent.

"For me, it is always a work of the whole team. You have top players like [Robert] Lewandowski and many others, but you can't think that if you hire a player like Coutinho, he has this magic wand to do something special," he said.

"I think it's teamwork and you have to get a top performance every time. No matter which team you have to play on the weekend, it's always the same process. If you ever think that it's easy, it's a negative process.

"It's about your mentality and from my time back then, I know very well that we had a lot of players as far as the character was concerned, they were very concentrated and really had the focus in their heads to win the championship, and also to go far in the Champions League.

"They're all top teams [in the Champions League] and it's not easy to make your way there. Bayern already needs a team at the top level."

Antoine Griezmann insisted it will take time for him to gel with Lionel Messi and Luis Suarez after Barcelona escaped with a point against Borussia Dortmund in their Champions League opener.

Barcelona held on for a 0-0 draw away to Bundesliga side Dortmund in Tuesday's Group F clash after goalkeeper Marc-Andre ter Stegen saved a second-half penalty from Marco Reus.

Star man Messi made his first appearance of the season after recovering from a calf injury – coming on as a second-half substitute – but it was a frustrating night for the LaLiga champions, whose side included Suarez and close-season arrival Griezmann.

"It's my second month since I arrived, I have to get used to it and play more with them to understand the movements of Suarez and Leo," Griezmann – a €120million signing from Atletico Madrid – acknowledged in Movistar +.

"We have not knocked on the door enough and we must improve and work at it. It is a point but Marc stopped a penalty and made other saves."

Barca head coach Valverde admitted they had Ter Stegen to thank after he made a string of fine saves - including one to deny Germany colleague Reus in the 57th minute.

"It was a difficult game in a great atmosphere," Valverde said. "We had to suffer a lot, especially after the break when we lost control and they were very dangerous.

"In the first half we dominated a bit more. We were lacking in the final third. We have to thank Marc-Andre ter Stegen for his outstanding saves.

"We know we have to improve away from home. We tried giving Messi a few minutes and Luis Suarez played from the start."

Ter Stegen added: "People know what I'm capable of. I just want to concentrate wholly on my work and perform at 100 per cent of my capabilities. Today I think I demonstrated that."

Dortmund captain Reus acknowledged his frustration at missing such a golden opportunity to defeat the Spanish giants.

He said: "Marc is a world-class keeper. My penalty was not really well-taken. Back to the training ground for that.

"Of course it does not feel good. I failed to convert a penalty and we had several other chances. One goal probably would have been enough for a win. We hardly allowed Barcelona space and showed a strong performance."

Dortmund defender Mats Hummels said the result felt like a missed opportunity, however, the German insisted there were plenty of positives to take from the performance.

"In the end we lost two points and failed to be in a better position. Nevertheless, we can be especially proud of the second half," the 30-year-old said.

Thirteen weeks on from lifting the Bundesliga for a seventh successive year, Bayern Munich begin their latest title defence with a home match against Hertha Berlin on Friday.

Bayern have strengthened their defence during the close season, but they are a little light in attack following the departures of Franck Ribery, Arjen Robben and James Rodriguez.

Will that give other teams, namely last term's runners-up Borussia Dortmund, an opportunity to catch Niko Kovac's side?

The transfer window does not shut until September 2 but, ahead of the opening round of fixtures, we look at the five best signings made by Bundesliga clubs.

 

5. Ademola Lookman (RB Leipzig)

Following the success of Jadon Sancho at Dortmund, German clubs are desperate to get their hands on the next young British talent.

Others have followed in the steps of Sancho, including Rabbi Matondo, Ethan Ampadu, Emile Smith Rowe and Reiss Nelson, each with the aim of making a name for themselves on foreign shores.

Lookman is no stranger to doing exactly that, having starred for Leipzig during a spell on loan at Red Bull Arena in 2018 when playing a direct part in eight goals across his 11 Bundesliga appearances.

First-team opportunities were few and far between on his return to Everton, but he now has a chance to truly kickstart his career after a permanent deal worth a reported €25million was agreed between the clubs.

 

4. Moussa Diaby (Bayer Leverkusen)

Awarded the Titi d’Or award in 2016 - given to the player deemed the most promising in Paris Saint-Germain's academy - Diaby was expected to go on and become a key member in PSG's first-team squad.

Following a brief spell on loan with Crotone in 2017-18, Diaby returned to the Parc des Princes and started 10 Ligue 1 matches last season, scoring two goals and setting up six more.

He further enhanced his reputation with France at the Under-20 World Cup, but with competition from the likes of Neymar, Kylian Mbappe, Angel Di Maria and Julian Draxler in the wide positions, he opted to move to Leverkusen.

Having also brought in Kerem Demirbay from Hoffenheim in a reported €28m deal, not many sides will have more creative midfield talents than Leverkusen this season.


3. Thorgan Hazard (Borussia Dortmund)

Dortmund were quick off the mark with their transfer dealings, using the cash from Christian Pulisic's £58m sale to Chelsea to bolster their squad from front to back.

Less than a week after the 2018-19 campaign finished, Hazard and Julian Brandt arrived at Dortmund on five-year deals from Borussia Monchengladbach and Bayer Leverkusen respectively on the same day.

Brandt boasts plenty of Bundesliga experience from his five years with Bayer and represented Germany at the 2018 World Cup. 

It is arguably the capture of Hazard that is the more exciting of the two, though. The Belgian attacking midfielder registered double figures for both goals and assists in the top flight last season and he will provide BVB with some additional creativity.

 

2. Lucas Hernandez (Bayern Munich)

Like Dortmund, Bayern did not hang around to get their biggest pieces of transfer business - to date, at least - out of the way early on as they completed deals for French defenders Hernandez and Benjamin Pavard before last season was even over.

Pavard arrives from Stuttgart for around €35m and Lucas makes the switch from Atletico Madrid for a mammoth €80m.

Bayern now have both of the starting full-backs from France's World Cup-winning campaign, and in Lucas they have a player capable of playing on the left or in central defence, where he is most likely to feature during his time at the Allianz Arena.

He missed all of Bayern's pre-season programme but has now recovered from knee surgery and is expected to slot in alongside Niklas Sule in the early weeks of the season.


1. Mats Hummels (Borussia Dortmund)

Dortmund led the way at the top of the Bundesliga for a large part of last season, only to slip away when the going got tough.

The return of experienced defender Hummels in the heart of defence could potentially be the missing piece in the jigsaw for Lucien Favre's side, then, with BVB finishing just two points behind Bayern last time around.

He returns to Signal Iduna Park for a reported fee of €31m and has plenty of title-winning experience that he can put to good use, making Bayern's decision to sell him to a direct rival somewhat surprising - and one that could potentially backfire come next May.

Mats Hummels has made one return in recent months by going back to Borussia Dortmund, and he is still open to the possibility of playing for Germany again.

World Cup winner Hummels, along with then Bayern Munich team-mates Jerome Boateng and Thomas Muller, was informed by Joachim Low earlier this year that he would not be considered for international selection going forward.

However, Hummels appears to harbour no ill feeling towards Low as he remains receptive to a call-up in the future.

For now, the 30-year-old centre-back is not giving the possibility too much thought.

"If I'm allowed to put on the Germany shirt again at some point, I would not resist it," he told Kicker.

"I do not have that option at the moment and will use the international break for other purposes. But I'll be playing for a few more years, so let's just see what happens."

Hummels moved back to Dortmund in this transfer window in a reported €38m switch from Bayern, where he had won three Bundesliga titles in three seasons.

Dortmund were champions twice previously with Hummels in the side, but he admits there is a mentality he hopes to bring back to BVB that might have been missing as they collapsed in the 2018-19 title race.

"It has to be acknowledged that the winning mentality in Munich is not the worst, as can be seen for more than 40 years," he said.

"However different the cultures of the clubs are, it must be my goal to bring this attitude even more in Dortmund now."

Mats Hummels has missed out on a swift reunion with Bayern Munich after an injury ruled him out of Borussia Dortmund's starting line-up for the DFL-Supercup.

Hummels returned to Dortmund in a €38million deal after three consecutive Bundesliga-winning seasons at the Allianz Arena.

But a muscular problem sustained during BVB's final training session for the game at Signal Iduna Park means the former Germany centre-back is sidelined alongside fellow new recruits Thorgan Hazard (ankle), Julian Brandt (adductor) and Mateu Morey (shoulder), while Marwin Hitz starts in goal because Roman Burki has a leg problem.

"Sadly, I can't play today. I felt problems in training last-minute and we thought it would be reasonable to sit this one out despite the game's meaningfulness - especially for me," Hummels tweeted. 

"I'm looking forward to my 'debut' hopefully in the next weeks."

Kingsley Coman lines up for Bayern having made a full recovery from the bruised knee he suffered during the Audi Cup clash against Tottenham earlier this week.

Borussia Dortmund chief executive Hans-Joachim Watzke has thanked Bayern Munich counterpart Karl-Heinz Rummenigge for letting Mats Hummels return to Signal Iduna Park.

The Germany international is back at Dortmund for a second spell after a €38million agreement was reached between the Bundesliga rivals in June.

Hummels won three successive top-flight crowns with Bayern, including last season's when finishing two points in front of BVB, but Rummenigge was still willing to sanction the experienced centre-back's exit when a big bid came in.

"I am very grateful to Karl-Heinz Rummenigge for having respected the player's will," Watzke told DPA. "I thought that was extraordinary. 

"The way in which these negotiations ended was an indication to me how respectfully we are working together at the highest levels."

Hummels is not the first player to return to Dortmund in recent years, with Nuri Sahin, Shinji Kagawa and Mario Gotze also being brought back.

Sahin and Kagawa struggled to make much of an impact on their second coming, while Gotze has had a mixed spell since rejoining from Bayern in 2016, but Watzke insisted that this latest case is different to the others.

"Nuri, Shinji and Mario struggled at their new clubs," he said.

"Mats was an absolute star player at Bayern, who won three championships there in three years and was recently voted the strongest centre-back in the league."

Page 1 of 2
© 2020 SportsMaxTV All Rights Reserved.