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Explosion near Dortmund coach: Champions League game postponed

Marc Bartra taken to hospital and required surgery to his hand. Three devices confirmed. Investigation continues
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Borussia Dortmund's damaged bus is pictured after an explosion some 10km away from the stadium prior to the UEFA Champions League 1st leg quarter-final football match BVB Borussia Dortmund v Monaco in Dortmund, western Germany on April 11, 2017. / AF

There has been an explosion near the bus carrying the Borussia Dortmund team to the Champions League home leg against Monaco on Tuesday evening. One person, player Marc Bartra, was injured and taken to hospital. We'll continue to update this story as news is confirmed.

23:28 | The club director of communications, Sascha Fligge, has confirmed that Marc Bartra is undergoing surgery. He suffered a broken bone in his right wrist, as well as foreign object in his arm.

23:24 | Dortmund police have been holding a press conference: 

Gregor Lange, chief of Police Dortmund, Sascha Fligge, press officer of Borussia Dortmund and Sandra Luecke, public prosecutor, speak to the media.
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Gregor Lange, chief of Police Dortmund, Sascha Fligge, press officer of Borussia Dortmund and Sandra Luecke, public prosecutor, speak to the media.Lukas SchulzeGetty Images

"At 19:15 CET three explosions happened next to the Dortmund team bus. We are treating this as a targeted attack on the Borussia Dortmund team."

Police also confirm finding a letter in the vicinity of the crime scene. The authenticity is currently being assessed.

23:05 | Some outlets saying that Marc Bartra is going into surgery, while others saying his superficial injuries have been treated and he's out of hospital. We'll confirm once official.

22:38 | Following tonight's incident, the hashtag #bedforawayfans has been used offering Monaco fans a place to stay. Classy from Dortmund and all who have got involved. (Some examples below)

22:21 | There are no indications that the three explosions that rocked the Borussia Dortmund team bus were part of an organised terror attack, national news agency DPA reported, citing unnamed security sources.

Where the incident took place, 10km from the stadium.
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Where the incident took place, 10km from the stadium.

'No element' points in the direction of such an assault, said the German agency, in line with police who have so far also avoided describing it as a terror attack.

22:12 | Roman Bürki, Dortmund goalkeeper, has given his account of events to Blick. The player was sitting next to Bartra:

"We left the hotel at 19:45 and went down the street. The bus turned into the main street, when there was a huge explosion. I was sitting in the back row next to Marc Bartra, who was hit by fragments of the broken window. After the bang, we all ducked down on the bus and whoever could got on the floor. We didn't know what else was going to happen. The police were quickly on the scene and they handled the situation. We're all shocked. Nobody thought about a football match in those minutes."

21:51 | Lots of questions being asked about whether this was a terrorist attack (like is being reported by some) or an unfortunate accident. As yet this what caused the explosions not been confirmed. What has been said by local police is "after our initial investigation we are working on the assumption that this was an attack with serious explosives”.

21:28 | Dortmund police have confirmed that the explosions went off just before 19:00 local time. Also, according to local sources, the wheels of the bus were damaged to various degrees.

21:17 | Messages of support naturally being shared on social media. We have posted some of these at the bottom of this article. 

21:14 | Confirmation from Dortmund's CEO Hans-Joachim Watzke that Bartra injured his hand and is being treated in hospital. He has also stated: "The team is in shock. We must get through this. I hope the team will be in a position to be able to compete tomorrow on the pitch. In a crisis situation like this, Borussia pulls together."

21:56 | Merino's parents also stated that their son went in the ambulance with Bartra but were unaware of who "threw the objects" against the bus. 

Fans of Dortmund are concerned of the bomb attack to the team bus.
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Fans of Dortmund are concerned of the bomb attack to the team bus.Christof KoepselBongarts/Getty Images

20:41 | The parents of Dortmund player, Mikel Merino, have told Carrusel Deportivo that there were three devices that exploded beside the bus. Local police have since confirmed this.

20:40 | Confirmation from the mother of the Spanish player, Bartra, - speaking with SER and COPE -  that he has some small cuts to his arms and he has been taken to hospital.

20:30 | Game suspended: it will be played at 18:45 ahead of the two other Champions League games tomorrow. 

20:21 | A tweet from the official Dortmund account has said that the players are safe. The Spanish prime minister has sent his best wishes via Twitter to compatriot Marc Bartra.

20:19 | Dortmund have said a decision on whether the game will go ahead will be made at 20:30 CEST

20:13 | AS have colleagues at the scene who claim to have heard 3 explosions and state that Bartra's injuries were caused by shrapnel from the window glass to the face and arm although he is not seriously injured.

20:02 | German news outlet Bild have reported that there was an explosion near the Dortmund team bus as they travelled to the stadium to play against Monaco in the Champions League. The reports state that one person has been injured and have named them as ex-Barcelona player Marc Bartra who has been taken to hospital. 

Investigation underway

The incident happened on the Wittbräucker road, just 10 kilometers from the Westfalenstadion. The police are investigating.

Alfredo Relaño on violence and humanity in European football.

Monaco fans show support

Monaco fans show support

Spanish prime minister sends best wishes


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