Evo-Stik Northern Premier League club Marine had some very special guests at their Marine Travel Arena home on Thursday morning.

Bundesliga giant Borussia Dortmund prepared for their Europa League Quarter Final second leg against Liverpool by training on the Mariners pitch.

Stars like Marco Reus, Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and Mats Hummels took part in a marinetraining session led by Head Coach Thomas Tuchel.

News of the session quickly hit social media as images of the Dortmund players spread around the internet.

And Mariners chairman Paul Leary told BBC Radio Merseyside that he thought the request to use the pitch was an April Fools Day prank.

“I was approached by their agents in Manchester funnily enough on the morning of 1 April and I actually thought it was an April Fool”

“We were assured it was a serious enquiry and we were delighted to assist them.”

He also went on to reveal the lengths he had to go to so that the session remained confidential.

“We had to keep it absolutely confidential and I only told the remaining directors on Tuesday morning,” added Leary.

“Had it got out in the public domain then it would’ve been a difficult situation to manage”

The German side did leave a gift as a thank you to the Mariners, with Leary confirming “They’ve donated two Dortmund shirts and all of their players have signed the shirts which will be framed and hung in our new boardroom.”

Quotes: www.bbc.co.uk

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