DORTMUND, Germany -- Marc Bartra has hit out at suggestions that he still has nightmares about the bomb attack on the Borussia Dortmund team bus ahead of a Champions League match last April, despite a court statement with quotes saying the contrary.
Bartra, 27, sustained injuries to his right wrist during the attack on April 11, and required surgery. In a statement read out by Alfons Becker, one of the Bundesliga club's lawyers at the trial as the Spaniard appeared as a witness on the fourth day of the trial against Sergej W, Bartra recalled the minutes before and after the attack and gave an insight into his well-being months after the events on April 11, 2017.
"The attack has changed my life," Barta said. "I am happy to have survived the attack. I have always asked myself why does someone carry out such an attack."
Speaking about the explosion, Bartra said: "I felt a huge heat inside my body, my head fell to the side. I looked at Roman Burki. I could not hear anything; my arm was bleeding, I could not move it.
"I was in mortal fear. I felt dizzy, the heat was still there in my body, feared to lose my consciousness. I feared for my life, and to never see my family again." When questioned whether he was receiving psychological treatment, he said: "I am mentally strong."
Earlier Bartra admitted he has not forgotten the attack. He said: "I normally don't think about it, but when I am confronted with it, I don't feel well." The Spaniard, however, said that when returning to the team hotel for the first time he did not feel well, and added: "I still have that nightmare where everything is quiet and then there is this explosion. The attack has changed my life."
However, later on Monday he took to Twitter to clarify his words.
Please I would like to request respect from some Media: pic.twitter.com/8MTvEBWlqe— Marc Bartra (@MarcBartra) January 29, 2018
The former Barcelona defender was one of two BVB players on board the team bus that day to be summoned to court as a witness. But while attacker Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang was excused with a doctor's certificate, Bartra appeared at Dortmund's district court at 10.16 a.m. local time.
Bartra, who had sat in the last row of BVB's team bus, was taken to a hospital in Dortmund and underwent surgery that evening. He remained in hospital for five days and returned to the Dortmund squad for the last few matches of the season.
Sergej W, the 28-year-old defendant earlier this month pleaded guilty of causing an explosion, but claimed the three bombs used "were constructed to not cause bodily harm."
On Monday, Sergej W apologised to Bartra, saying: "I feel sorry for what I have done to you."
Dortmund lawyer Becker said the situation inside the courtroom was "extremely taxing" for the player, adding that Bartra only "wants to get it over and done with."