Dortmund CEO Hans-Joachim Watzke looks on during Bundesliga match. Photo: Friedmann Vogel/EPA

BERLIN Borussia Dortmund chairman Hans-Joachim Watzke late on Saturday apologised to Hoffenheim owner Dietmar Hopp for abuse by Dortmund fans at their Bundesliga match.

Dortmund fans held up insulting banners and engaged in abusive chants at the Sinsheim stadium during the 1-1 draw on Saturday.

Hopp, 78, is the co-founder of software giants SAP and was allowed to take over the club because he has invested heavily into them for more than 20 years.

Some die-hard Dortmund fans oppose such ownership, consider Hoffenheim a "plastic club" and have protested in similar ways in the past. Hopp has pressed charges against Dortmund fans who engaged in abusive chants against him at the previous game in May which further angered some fans and led to Saturday's protests.

"On behalf of Borussia Dortmund, I would like to offer my apologies to Dietmar Hopp. What happened is completely unacceptable! I will make sure to get in touch with Dietmar Hopp over the course of the next week to offer this apology in person,'' Watzke said in a club statement.

"Unfortunately things really seemed to get out of hand this week. We spoke to to all parties in an attempt to calm things down, but unfortunately we weren't successful. This kind of behaviour is in absolutely no way representative of the values of Borussia Dortmund!"

Hopp did not want to comment on the incidents after the game.


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