'We Were Scared for Our Lives' Newcastle's Mikel Merino Opens Up on Dortmund Bomb Attack

Sunday August 6th, 2017

Newcastle midfielder Mikel Merino has recalled the horrific attack on Borussia Dortmund's team bus that nearly killed teammate Marc Bartra.

Merino, a 21-year-old midfielder, recently joined the Magpies on a season-long loan deal, which should be made permanent as long as he makes a certain number of appearances.

FBL-GER-BUNDESLIGA-MONCHENGLADBACH-DORTMUND

On April 11, the player was sat on BVB's team bus, headed to their Westfalenstadion to face Monaco in the first leg of a Champions League quarter-final tie when three pipe bombs detonated near the vehicle.

He describes the events in detail below:

"We were scared for our lives," Merino said, via the Mail.

"We were in a moment where we don't know what is going on and what is possibly going to happen.

"Someone sent three bombs to try and kill us. We had not died so we thought, 'They put bombs to kill us, we did not die. Are they going to come here to kill us with guns and everything?'"

"At this moment you cannot know and you expect everything. It was crazy - we were scared, totally scared.

"I had my headphones on at the highest volume I can.

FBL-GER-BUNDESLIGA-DORTMUND-HERTHA

"Then I hear a really loud noise, an explosion. It was incredible - the ears started doing a sound."

"Then you look out the window, you see it full of dust and you don't know what is happening. The bus moves to one side and almost to the left on two wheels.

"We are totally scared. We know that it has been an explosion and people are screaming to the driver, 'Get out (of here), get out. But you don't know what is going to happen.

"There could be more bombs or someone could come to kill us. But the driver could not hear.

"It is an experience that is hard but helps you to see your life with all of your eyes.

"You have to always be positive about these things. With the passing of days you see it differently. Now, I look at it as an experience, but of course I hope never to repeat it."

SI Apps
We've Got Apps Too
Get expert analysis, unrivaled access, and the award-winning storytelling only SI can provide—from Peter King, Tom Verducci, Lee Jenkins, Andy Staples, Grant Wahl, and more—delivered straight to you, along with up-to-the-minute news and live scores.