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Injury update: Arjen Robben close to return, Manuel Neuer “ready to run”

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The pair of injured players are making great progress.

Arjen Robben and Manuel Neuer of Muenchen italk after the Bundesliga match between Werder Bremen and Bayern Muenchen at Weserstadion on January 28, 2017 in Bremen, Germany. Photo by Stuart Franklin/Bongarts/Getty Images

Both Arjen Robben and Manuel Neuer have been making excellent strides in recovery from their respective injuries. While the majority of players in the Bayern Munich squad are off on international duty, the two have been utilizing their time to continue their rehabilitative training. Robben has been suffering from a pinched nerve in his back sustained in Bayern’s 6-0 win over Hamburg two weeks ago, while Neuer has been on an extended layover since as a result of his metatarsal injury that he picked up

Per Bild, Robben took to the pitch at Säbener Straße to do some jogging routines under the supervision of Thomas Wilhelmi, Bayern’s rehab coach. Robben also completed some light dribbling drills with the ball before picking up the intensity with passing, shooting, and quick turning drills. The Dutchman was constantly seen stretching out his back under the close eye of Wilhemi. Hopefully for Bayern, Robben will be available for the match against Borussia Dortmund next weekend, when Bayern could technically clinch the Bundesliga title if results elsewhere go their way.

Speaking to FC Bayern TV (via kicker), Neuer revealed that he’s finally running at 100%, and could potentially resume normal training as early as next week:

I have a great day behind me today [Friday’s training session]. It was an emotional day, because I ran 100% for the first time today—three times for five minutes. My foot didn’t react at all; both feel the same, the right and the left one. It was an important step for me.

The keeper is set to have another MRI over the weekend to ensure that the bones have healed properly. If all is well, Neuer remains optimistic that he can start picking up the intensity, though he admits he wants to be extra careful:

When I’m out in the field and wearing soccer cleats, we’ll see how my body, how my foot reacts. I hope I can still play for Bayern this season. That’s realistic, but the timing [of a comeback] of course can’t be predicted. My goal is still that I’ll rejoin the national team having played a game.

Neuer emphasized the cautiousness with which he has to approach his his second comeback from the repeated fracture:

It’s really important that nothing else happens to my foot now, or else it could really end my career. I’m confident, I think, that I’ll recover my old strength.