The French contingent at Bayern Munich had a mixed start to the World Cup campaign in Qatar on Tuesday. After going behind early against Australia, the defending World champions responded strongly to claim a 4-1 win. However, the victory against Australia was dampened by a serious injury to Lucas Hernandez.
The French defender started the game against Australia in the left-back position, but he was withdrawn after 13 minutes since he suffered a serious knee injury. The early suggestions in French media are worrying, as Hernandez is expected to be out for the rest of the season due to a torn ACL.
Hernandez will have to leave the French camp and undergo surgery to repair the torn ligament. Bayern is yet to give an official statement since preliminary scans are not completed, but French head coach Didier Deschamps insisted that it is a very serious injury.
Bayern has suffered a massive blow in the first week of the World Cup. Lucas Hernandez has been a crucial player for Die Roten this season. He excelled under Julian Nagelsmann in the central defense and featured regularly in the starting XI until the end of September. An adductor injury ruled him out for six weeks, but Hernandez recovered in time to play in the World Cup.
Hernandez will need six to eight months for recovery if it is a ligament tear. The French defender may directly return to training when pre-season begins in the summer. Hernandez has endured rotten luck when it comes to injuries, but this will hurt the most since it happened in the first game of the World Cup.
Bayern is unlikely to dig into the transfer market due to the injury to Lucas Hernandez. Matthijs de Ligt and Dayot Upamecano will be the first-choice center-back pairing in Ruckrunde, while Benjamin Pavard can also provide cover in this position.
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Upamecano played the entire 90 minutes against Australia, while Pavard played 88 minutes. Kingsley Coman came off the bench for the final 15 minutes when the game was effectively sealed for France. The injury to Hernandez has completely overweighed the other positives in France’s win from Bayern’s point of view.
Julian Nagelsmann and the Bavarian faithful will be praying that there is no other injury scares for Bayern players in the rest of the tournament. Leroy Sane is set to miss Germany’s opening game due to a minor knock, but all other Die Roten players are fit for the group stages.