Borussia Dortmund have been boosted by the news that defender Sokratis Papastathopoulos is available for their visit to Bremen this Saturday.
Sokratis was almost forced to miss his first trip back to his former club due to the imminent of his first child. But, on Thursday, his wife gave birth.
"There are things in life more important than football," Dortmund coach Juergen Klopp told a news conference ahead of the trip up north, and added that he would never have insisted that Sokratis joined the team.
However, there was quite some relief for Klopp. Dortmund already have to do without their first-choice centre-back pairing of Neven Subotic and Mats Hummels, and Sokratis’ absence would have only deepened Klopp’s worries.
Three candidates could line up next to Sokratis against struggling Bremen, with Sven Bender most likely destined for another appearance as a makeshift centre-back. The Germany international played in that position in Dortmund’s 2-2 draw against Augsburg and in the Champions League.
"I already know what the solution is, but I won’t reveal it today. We have options, and we are going to use one of them," Klopp said.
The Dortmund boss also expressed his relief that Mats Hummels will only miss a couple of games with a foot sprain suffered during a midweek friendly.
"I initially feared the injury would be much more serious," Klopp said. "It’s not good, but it’s no catastrophe, either. We now look from day to day, and then see when he can return to training."