Dortmund’s injured Bartra ‘a fine representative’ of Barcelona’s academy

Deutsche Welle
5 Min Read

Marc Bartra quickly became a regular fixture in Dortmund’s lineup after moving from from Barca in the summer. An operation on injuries suffered in the bus attack appears to have gone well.Borussia Dortmund defender Marc Bartra had the radial bone in his right arm broken and fragments of debris lodged in his hand after three explosive devices were detonated near the team bus on Tuesday night. Bartra was sat on the back row of the bus at about 19:15 CET as the bus left the team’s hotel to make the short trip to the Signal Iduna Park for their Champions League quarterfinal first-leg tie against French side Monaco.

The explosions shattered some of the bullet-proof glass windows and Bartra was struck on the hand and arm with shards of broken glass. Initially described as “lightly injured,” his status was later revised to “badly injured” as he was taken to hospital and underwent surgery to remove the fragments. No other players were injured.

“Bartra was injured, on his hand and his arm, but nothing that would be life-threatening,” said Borussia Dortmund’s chairman, Hans-Joachim Watzke. “The team is in complete shock. Our task now is to process this experience as professionally as possible because the match is taking place in less than 24 hours. That’s our job.”

Not the first time for Bartra

This is not the first time that Bartra has been caught up in football-related terrorist incident. A Spanish international since 2013, Bartra was in the Spain squad for a friendly against Belgium in November 2015 which was called off in the wake of the Paris terror attacks. “If we’re going to play, it’s because it’s safe,” Bartra told reporters at the time. “We’re calm.”

On Wednesday morning, Dortmund’s president, Reinhard Rauball, confirmed to German private broadcaster n-tv that Bartra’s operation on his injured arm and hand had gone well and said the club believed he may be fit to play again before the end of the season.

From Barca to Borussia

The 26-year-old central defender last season’s Bundesliga runners-up in the summer and has since made 29 appearances for Thomas Tuchel’s team, scoring one goal. A composed, ball-playing central defender, he came through the ranks at Barcelona’s famous La Masia youth academy before playing 81 times for the club’s B team.

Officials at the Spanish club called Bartra a “fine representative of the values embodied by La Masia, both as a player and as a person.”

He made his first-team debut on 14 February 2010 before making his first start a year later. He went on to play a total of 103 games for the Catalan giants, scoring six goals, before signing a four-year contract with Borussia Dortmund last summer.

The defender, who moved to the club for an estimated 8 million euros ($8.48 million) was one of eight new signings as the club looked to replace a number of high-profile departures. Bartra made his Dortmund debut in the team’s 2-0 Supercup defeat to Bayern Munich and scored his first goal for the club in a 6-0 win away at Legia Warsaw in the Champions League.

Fan favorite

Bartra generated a lot of attention on social media following Dortmund’s local derby against Schalke earlier this month. After spotting a photograph showing a lone fan sitting in the middle of the Schalke section in a bright yellow Dortmund jersey, Bartra launched an appeal via Twitter to find the brave fan.

The fan was quickly identified as Stefanie Adam-Paap who met Bartra at the club’s training ground and received a signed shirt from the defender.

The rest of the Dortmund squad took part in a light training session at 11:00 CET ahead of the re-arranged fixture against Monaco which is scheduled to kick off at 18:45 local time on Wednesday.

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