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Mario Gotze was acquired by Bayern Munich not to distract Borussia Dortmund in Champions League.
Bayern sporting director Matthias Sammer defended their move, saying the decision to announce the signing of Gotze was not designed to keep Dortmund off guard in the Champions League semifinals.
Dortmund are facing Real Madrid in the two-leg semifinals.
Although Sammer admitted the timing of the announcement was far from ideal, he has brushed aside specualtion that it was intended to unsettle the club’s German rival prior to Wednesday’s meeting with Real Madrid.
Gotze, 20, emerged as one of the most coveted talents in Europe but it is the Bavarian giants who have won the race from other teams after triggering the forward’s £32-million (€37 million) release clause. The contract makes Gotze the most expensive German player ever.
The Germany international, who was under contract until 2016, has inked a long-term deal which starts in July, worth according to early reports £6 million a year.
“If we would have wanted to announce the transfer (to affect Dortmund), we would have done it tomorrow, directly ahead of Dortmund’s match,” Sammer told Sky Sports. “The timing, of course, is not perfect.’’
He added: “Our aim was to play the first legs of the Champions League semifinals and then announce it in the middle or at the end of this week.”