Marco Reus urged his Borussia Dortmund team-mates to use the pain of narrowly missing out on the Bundesliga title last season to inspire them to glory next time around.
Dortmund were nine points clear at the top of the table after beating Hannover 5-1 at the end of January, only to pick up just one win from their next five matches to allow Bayern Munich to pounce.
Bayern went on to seal a seventh successive title triumph on the final day of the season with a thumping 5-1 victory over Eintracht Frankfurt as they finished two points clear of Dortmund.
And Reus, who has not lifted the Bundesliga crown during his seven years at the Westfalenstadion, is eager to learn from the experience of falling just short after leading the way for so long.
“It hurt, because the chance this time was just unbelievably big, there was a lot more in it for us,” the Bundesliga Player of the Season told German outlet Kicker.
“I believe that it will help us in the future, which may be the positive thing about it – everyone has now gained experience. Our goal must therefore be to stay at the top of the table and then get the title.
“My greed has been extremely pronounced since my first day at BVB, but the closer to the end of my own career I get, the more intense it is.
“Since coming to Dortmund, we’ve been close to it a few times, but in the next two or three years, things have to work out, and I’ll do anything for it.”
Dortmund have lost Christian Pulisic to Chelsea ahead of next season, but they have used the funds wisely by adding Thorgan Hazard, Nico Schulz and Julian Brandt to their squad.
Reus knows Schulz and Brandt well from the Germany national side and is excited to link up with the pair at club level.
“I am glad that we have two top people from the national team, which is good for us. It means even more quality and depth,” he said.
“Especially in the second half of the season we were lacking the necessary power due to some injuries, so I think it’s good and right that the competition gets even bigger.
“If you have big goals – and we do – then you need a lot of top-class players. And we will certainly get them with [Schulz and Brandt].”