Bayern Munich has endured terrible luck when it comes to injuries at a crucial phase of the season for most of the last decade. This season has been nothing different for Bayern, as they will be without key players for the second half of the season.
Lucas Hernandez was the first serious injury blow Bayern suffered in November. The French defender suffered a cruciate ligament injury during France’s 4-1 win against Australia in World Cup 2022. The French defender is expected to be back by the start of the next season.
The second blow for Bayern came in mid-December. Manuel Neuer broke his leg during a freak accident on a ski trip. The German goalkeeper immediately underwent surgery, but he will not be playing again this season. Neuer is likely to be fit by the start of the pre-season training in the summer.
Both players have been crucial for Die Roten, so it is going to be a big blow for Julian Nagelsmann and his plans for Ruckrunde. However, Bayern Munich president Herbert Hainer is confident about the team coping with these two severe injury blows. While talking to the club’s media on Friday, Hainer insisted that all players will be giving their all to win titles for their injured teammates.
"“Both injuries were a shock, of course. These two important mainstays will be out for the second half of the season. We are FC Bayern and always see challenges as opportunities – that’s part of the DNA of this club. Our players will give everything to also win silverware for their injured teammates in 2023.”"
Bayern is looking for a solution to Neuer’s injury in the transfer market. The Bavarian club is trying to negotiate a deal with Monaco to recall Alexander Nubel. The former Schalke goalkeeper has been out on loan at Monaco since 2021. Borussia Monchengladbach’s Yann Sommer is another option for Die Roten to replace Neuer for the second half of the season.
The record Bundesliga champions have no plans to sign a central defender in January to cope with Hernandez’s absence. Dayot Upamecano and Matthijs de Ligt will be the first-choice defensive pairing, while Benjamin Pavard will provide cover in this position. Josip Stanisic and Joshua Kimmich can also play in this position if other central defenders are not available for selection.
Apart from these two injuries, Die Roten will be without Sadio Mane for a few weeks in Ruckrunde. The Senegalese forward suffered an injury to his tibia in mid-November. He is expected to be back by late February. Bayern is hoping to see other forwards stepping up in the absence of Mane.
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Bayern is set to resume training at Sabner Strasse next week. After a few sessions in Munich, the first team is set to travel to Doha for a winter camp on January 6. They will return to Munich for a friendly game against Red Bull Salzburg before resuming the Bundesliga campaign away at RB Leipzig on January 20.