Dortmund's Mats Hummels on critics: 'Bad things sell better than positive'
Borussia Dortmund captain Mats Hummels believes the media have been excessively critical of him after a week in which he was dropped to the bench.
Hummels, 26, was rested for Dortmund's 4-1 victory Stuttgart on Sunday, only coming on as a sub for the final 10 minutes.
It was the first time in over a year that centre-back was used from the bench by Dortmund, and came after a difficult week when he had been attacked by the media for his performances. He was below par in the 3-1 defeat at Hamburg, and also gave away the penalty which led to the 1-0 Europa League loss at Krasnodar.
"It's a good feeling to be able to sub on quality like that," coach Thomas Tuchel said in his post-match news conference, adding that Hummels was "mentally exhausted" and was in need of a rest.
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During the turbulent week, there had been reports of a rift between the coach and his captain, but Hummels denied that this was the case.
"From a professional point of view and in terms of content he is definitely one of the best coaches in Germany. I like the way he perceives football," the centre-back told kicker. "We don't have any problem with each other. We can openly and constructively discuss and swap ideas, and we'll continue to do so."
Hummels, who on Twitter last week called the criticism of him "overblown," explained that he "presumes" that the media is overly critical with him.
"Maybe it's because there are not too many negative things to find at Bayern right now," he said. "Then you have a go at the next biggest teams and people in football. Inevitably you arrive at the second-ranked Borussia Dortmund and lads like Marco Reus, Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang or me."
While Hummels does "not know" whether it is a media campaign against him, he told the German football magazine that "he definitely feels under-valued."
He added: "The criticism has developed its own dynamics. Bad things sell better than positive reports. When there is chance to slap on someone, in my case the chance is embraced.
"When sometime in the future another club is going through a difficult phase, even though we are not going through one as the second-ranked team, another player will be chased around the village. It's like that in the football world we live in these days."
The Germany international said that he is open to every form of criticism if its justified, insisting: "I don't know a lot of people who are more critical of themselves."
Hummels, who is under contract at Dortmund until 2017, added that the "critical reporting" won't run him out of town or he would "have a screw loose."