In Switzerland, BVB chief executive Hans-Joachim Watzke spoke about his impressions of the training camp, the financial situation and the possible return of spectators.
Hans-Joachim Watzke on the season objectives:
"In an ideal scenario, we'd like to improve a bit in the Bundesliga and progress as far as we can in the two cup competitions, which went well last season."
…his impressions of the training camp:
"Marco Rose – like most other coaches at top clubs – is having a very hard time of it at the moment. This is the 17th pre-season I've been involved in. And I can't remember one where half the team still wasn't there in the fourth week. Marco and his team are generally doing very well. I saw the training this morning and I liked it a lot. A good speech, a clear concept. The external conditions are good too. We'll take what we can from this training camp, but it's unique."
…the central defence:
"Manuel will be back tomorrow, Mats is here. I believe he'll be back on the pitch considerably sooner than has been speculated. Emre is back as well. Two more centre-backs will be added in September, so hopefully we'll have four or five central defenders after the international break in mid-September. As it stands, it's not absolutely necessary to strengthen in that area. But I won't rule anything out; we're monitoring the situation closely."
"We still have the financial strength to do one or two pieces of business, even if we don't bring in more transfer income. But economically, we're blind-sided by corona to a certain degree. We have to build up reserves and see how the season progresses in the midst of the pandemic. Maybe at some point we'll only be allowed to play in front of just a few thousand spectators again. If it continues that way for a long time, some clubs are going to have real difficulties. So it helps to err on the side of caution at present. I feel like we have a pretty decent team when everyone is there and has got themselves into the right condition."
"At some point, those who get vaccinated need to be rewarded by regaining their rights, such as being able to go to a concert or into a stadium. I'm not a supporter of compulsory vaccinations for everyone, but as organisers we still have the right to say who we let in. I think at some point a situation will naturally arise whereby vaccinated people will have more opportunities. And when we allocate the quotas that we have for unvaccinated people, we also have to factor children in. That's very important to me. I can only appeal to everyone: those who can get vaccinated should do so."
…the economic significance of the return of spectators:
"For this season, we're planning with a capacity of 60% – knowing full well that there could be fewer spectators in autumn than in spring. But even that would not put us into the black. We'll all have a problem if we have two, three or four years with a capacity of 40 or 50%. The question is what the situation is like overseas. If other countries play with 100% capacity, because they have implemented different measures, then that distorts the competition."
Transcribed by Christina Reinke