Mats Hummels: Dortmund should forget about Europe
The Germany international has told his side: It is time to stop looking forward and the focus must be on avoiding relegation
Mats Hummels has acknowledged that qualifying for either the Champions League or Europa League this term is a bridge too far for Borussia Dortmund and has urged his team-mates to focus on escaping relegation.
BVB were battling the drop as they went into the winter break, but a string of good results at the start of the second half of the season boosted hopes of making it into Europe again after all.
However, Hummels has admitted they must stop looking up the table after recent draws versus Hamburg and Koln and with games against Bayern Munich, Borussia Monchengladbach and Wolfsburg on the horizon.
"After the two draws we've had, I think it’s time to stop looking forward," Hummels told the official Bundesliga website.
"We had that run of four wins and afterwards we thought, 'Yeah, win a couple more and we can gradually creep back up there', but we weren't able to do that.
"Now we've got lots of tough games coming up - Bayern, Hoffenheim, Gladbach, Wolfsburg and three of them away from home - which is a really tough run.
"So for me it’s just about getting points where we can and as quickly as we can so that relegation is mathematically impossible.
"Looking ahead of ourselves isn't really an option for us right now."
Dortmund currently sit 10th in the Bundesliga table with 33 points from 26 games, eight points clear of 16th placed HSV, but trailing sixth-placed Augsburg by five points.
Hummels has admitted he is considering his future at Signal Iduna Park but has denied suggestions he has a long-standing agreement to join Manchester United.
Borussia Dortmund 0-3 Juventus