The Borussia Dortmund team bus after the explosions showing damage to the rear window © Reuters
A Borussia Dortmund player was injured on Tuesday evening after three explosions went off next to the team bus as it travelled to a Champions League match against AS Monaco in the west German city.
Dortmund police said the blast occurred shortly after 7pm in Dortmund-Höchsten, a southern suburb of the city, and shattered the bus’s windows.
The club tweeted that Marc Bartra, a Spaniard who is Borussia Dortmund’s centre-back and also plays for Spain’s national football team, was injured. They said he was in hospital.
The regional North Rhine-Westphalia police said in a statement that they were assuming the devices were made from explosive material that should be taken seriously and that they could have been hidden in a hedge near the bus.
The match with Monaco was in the quarter-finals of the Champions League, Europe’s premier club competition. Borussia Dortmund tweeted that the match had been cancelled and would be held instead on Wednesday April 12.
Uefa, European football’s governing body, said the decision to postpone the game had been made “after a meeting held at the Westfalenstadion [where Borussia Dortmund play] between Uefa, representatives of the two clubs and local authorities”.
Marc Bartra, the Borussia Dortmund and Spain player who was injured
After the explosions Borussia Dortmund said there was no reason to expect any risk by the stadium but urged fans to remain inside for the present and to stay calm. The club also thanked Monaco supporters, who had been chanting “Dortmund! Dortmund!” in solidarity.
Norbert Dickel, a spokesman for the stadium, told fans a “serious incident” had occurred but stressed there was “no reason to panic”.
Borussia Dortmund are one of Germany’s biggest and most passionately supported football clubs. The team currently sits in fourth place in the Bundesliga, Germany’s top division. The club was founded in north-east Dortmund in 1909 and has since gone on to win eight German football championships, as well as the Champions League in 1997.
The explosion comes nearly a year-and-a-half after a football game between Germany and the Netherlands in Hannover had to be called off just two hours before its scheduled start over fears that the stadium would be attacked by terrorists.
The match was due to be played four days after deadly attacks in Paris when suicide bombers hit a football stadium where Germany were playing France. The Hannover stadium had to be evacuated but in the end no arrests were made and no explosives found.
Four months ago a Tunisian refugee drove a truck into a crowd at a Christmas market in central Berlin, killing 12 people and injuring many more. The militant group Isis later claimed responsibility for the attack.