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Players

Mats Hummels pledges loyalty to Dortmund

German international defender Mats Hummels has said he's staying with Borussia Dortmund, seeking to calm rumors that he could be next out the door.

Mats Hummels told the German specialist press that he was going nowhere this summer, despite persistent speculation linking him with a move abroad, with Barcelona the most commonly-mooted destination.

"There was never any contact. Neither with Barcelona nor with any other team," Hummels told this week's edition of Kicker, which hits the newsstands on Tuesday.

"I don't really see it as my job to deny the rumors that other people make up," Hummels said in the interview. "If at some point there's something to these things, then I will say so. And when I now say that these speculations are baseless, that should be enough."

Hummels is a regular for Dortmund and the German national team aged just 24, a commanding and powerful center back also known for his ability to surge forward with the ball at his feet and play accurate attacking passes. He said the thought of turning his back on Dortmund, who just finished this season's Bundesliga campaign a distant second to Bayern Munich, never entered his mind.

The two German giants meet at London’s Wembley Stadium on Saturday for the Champions League final. Hummels was one of the players potentially on the injury list after picking up a knock against Hoffenheim on Saturday, but he's now considered very likely to play in the final.

Götze's farewell

Mario Götze, a Dortmund star who is not only leaving, but defecting to Bayern, is also racing to recover from injury in time for the big game after missing Dortmund's last league matches of the season.

"A win in the final for my last game with [Borussia Dortmund] would be the greatest. I absolutely want to be a part of it in London, I will give my all for Borussia and want to help the team so that we can lift the trophy," Götze said ahead of the game against his future employers.

With Götze on his way out for some 38 million euros, and the future of forward Robert Lewandowski in permanent question, Hummels' pledge of fealty comes at an ideal time for a Dortmund side that already has some summer shopping to do.

UEFA announced on Monday that Italian referee Nicola Rizzoli would oversee the Wembley final, the 41-year-old's biggest match since becoming an international referee in 2007.

Borussia Dortmund will seek to show their "Champions League faces" in the final, according to coach Jürgen Klopp, after a difficult season in other competitions. Dortmund's only chance at silverware is the largest competition of them all, as they will seek to spoil a treble for Bayern Munich. Bayern, meanwhile, are playing for their second out of three major competitions on Saturday; the new Bundesliga champions will face Stuttgart in the German Cup final a week later.