Franck Ribery's last competitive appearance for any team, Bayern Munich or France, was May 17th in the DFB Pokal final. Even that appearances was at far less than 100% as he started on the bench before entering for the injured Philipp Lahm and subsequently being withdrawn shortly into extra time.
After suffering a hematoma in January that gave way to compartment syndrome, Franck Ribery has been constantly battling back pain and injury for the better part of 9 months. Even when he did suit up for Bayern Munich he was far from his best as fractured ribs and knee injuries did the rest of the work presenting him with a revolving host of maladies that would frustrate and stifle any professional athlete.
Now, nearly a month into a new Bayern Munich season Franck Ribery is ready to make his first appearance of the season for Bayern Munich. Speaking to the club site, the Frenchman said "I feel good and I'm fit for Saturday." Ribery continued noting that he needs to work to get into a rhythm, which given the length of time and the host of changes in the club since then, it's not a surprising sentiment. One of the interesting questions is how Pep Guardiola will use the dynamic wide playmaker. Ribery is at his best at pace, using his dribbling skills and speed to break down opposition players one-on-one. While he's certainly got some of the best passing and crossing in the world to accentuate and augment those skills, how Guardiola deploys him in his new more narrow formation will of massive interest to all Bayern Munich fans come Saturday.
However, the true question on everyone's minds will be is Ribery truly ready and how long can he stay healthy? After a season of chronic issues, it's going to be hard to erase the myopia among Bayern Munich fans. And I'm certain Franck Ribery knows that. That's a recipe for a chip on a shoulder and the potential for fireworks, despite the words about "rhythm".