Borussia Dortmund midfielder Mario Gotze has insisted that his team-mates are not paying attention to claims from Real Madrid coach Jose Mourinho that they are favourites for the Champions League.
Jurgen Klopp’s men emerged from a group containing los Blancos, Manchester City and Ajax unbeaten and in top spot, and have been touted as frontrunners for the competition this season.
Among their admirers is the former Chelsea manager, but the 20-year-old schemer is trying to remain grounded, but admitted to being flattered.
“Okay, it shows they have a lot of respect. But many candidates are being named [favourites], we shouldn’t pay attention to that,” the 20-year-old told Kicker.
“If someone had told us before that we will be first in this tough group, no one would have believed it. We want to progress [to the quarter-finals], let’s see what happens.”
Despite their fine continental form, BVB have struggled in the Bundesliga, and Gotze feels has voiced his frustration with their domestic performances.
“Maybe we weren’t as focused in the league. It’s not that we played terribly. It was annoying to drop points in games like the one against Wolfsburg. That just didn’t go well for us.”
Dortmund return to Bundesliga action with a trip to Werder Bremen on January 19.