Mats Hummels: We didn’t really turn up

Borussia Dortmund defender Mats Hummels was impressed with the Aviva Stadium atmosphere in Thursday night’s defeat by the Republic of Ireland, but refused to accept that it played any part in Germany’s downfall.

“It was quite special after the full-time whistle,” acknowledged Hummels, in an interview with the German FA website. “Prior to that it was actually quite quiet, and I think we did well to keep them subdued through our style of play. There wasn’t much time for the Irish to genuinely think they were going to win — only right at the end.”

Hummels described a downcast German dressing room after the shock loss, which means the world champions require another point from their final group game against Georgia to confirm Euro 2016 qualification.

“We didn’t really turn up, and are very frustrated by the result — particularly because we have yet to secure qualification. There was no music in the changing room, the atmosphere was subdued, and no one was laughing. Everyone was somewhat emerged in their own thoughts.

“I don’t think we played that bad really. It is very frustrating that we weren’t able to use our chances to get a goal. And the fact that Ireland did use one of their chances was certainly not in the plan.”

The defender, who has been tipped to join former manager Jurgen Klopp at Liverpool, accepted responsibility for his part in Shane Long’s winner.

“We pushed out well, which was something we had set out to do from the beginning. We reacted half a second late to the long ball though — I’m guilty as well. It’s particularly annoying because we had the game under control at that point.”

Hummels claimed he should have had a penalty for a first-half foul by John O’Shea. “To be honest it felt like a penalty. In my opinion, it was fairly stonewall. I would have had a huge chance to score but I was pulled back very firmly. But we can’t use this as an excuse for our defeat.”

He insisted there will be no complacency ahead of the home tie with the Georgians. “We can’t presume that it’s a foregone conclusion. That would be completely the wrong mentality. But we are not naive enough to make this mistake.”

Hummels’ German team-mate Mario Gotze has been ruled out for up to 12 weeks by the groin injury he sustained on Thursday. His club Bayern Munich confirmed: “The 23-year-old was diagnosed on Friday with a ruptured muscle tendon in the groin.”

“It’s annoying for us and a real shame for him,” said Germany boss Joachim Low. “We wish him a good and speedy recovery. I am sure that he will be able to pick up his form again once he returns.”

The setback means Gotze will miss both of his club’s Champions League matches against Arsenal.

Meanwhile, Manchester United midfielder Bastian Schweinsteiger looks likely to be unavailable for the Georgia game due to a thigh injury.


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