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German clubs’ Euro exit no cause for panic, say officials

Borussia Dortmund joined Bayer Leverkusen and Schalke 04 out of the Europe’s premier competition on Wednesday after a 5-1 aggregate loss to Juventus.


On Tuesday Leverkusen were eliminated on penalties by Atletico Madrid with Schalke eliminated last week despite winning 4-3 at Real Madrid following a 2-0 loss at home.

Five-time winners Bayern Munich are the last German team left in the competition, less than two years after they featured along with Dortmund in the first ever all-German Champions League final in 2013.

Both teams had also made the quarter-finals in 2013 and 2014.

“This (exit) confirms what we had said after the glorious World Cup,” German football association (DFB) President Wolfgang Niersbach told reporters.

“There is no time to rest, no time to ease off. We have to keep at it if we are to remain at the top. I hope Bayern can now make it to the final in Berlin.”

Germany’s Bundesliga has been witnessing a boom for the past 10 years with revenues rising, clubs largely debt-free and successful on the pitch.

Bayern alone have reached the Champions League final three times in the last five seasons, with Dortmund also making the final and Schalke into the semis.

With four teams, Germany had more clubs in the knockout stage this season than Spain, England or Italy, though all three of England’s last-16 contenders also went out.

German football league (DFL) President Reinhard Rauball said Schalke and Leverkusen had been a little unlucky.

“Schalke could have advanced,” Rauball said after the Germans gave Real a major scare in the return leg, coming to within a goal of advancing.

“Leverkusen were extremely unlucky and the only club that deservedly was eliminated is unfortunately Dortmund,” said Rauball who is also president of the Ruhr valley club.”

Dortmund lost 3-0 at home to Juventus on Wednesday to equal their highest home defeat of the competition after also losing the first leg 2-1 in Italy.

(Editing by Mitch Phillips)