Ahead of the start Rückrunde, Bayern Munich are instituting more stringent COVID protocols with players and staff returning to Säbener Straße. In working with local health officials in Munich, Bayern have come up with what they feel is the best path forward for the club.
According to Bild, on the morning of Monday January 3, everyone involved and around the team (players, coaches, trainers, staff, etc) will arrive at Säbener Straße and complete a drive-up PCR test. The first training will then be in the afternoon, and they will only be allowed to show up if they test negative. The club wants to ensure that nobody returning from their vacation brings Omicron to the rest of the team forcing an entire-squad quarantine.
“With the hygiene concept adapted to the current situation and the expanded test strategy, we want to reduce the risk of a corona infection as much as possible,” said Dr. Roland Schmidt, Bayern’s team doctor and cardiologist. “We will also pay attention to reducing close contact situations away from the football field.”
With the more contagious Omicron variant currently plaguing the globe, Germany instituted a 14-day quarantine for people who test positive for the variant regardless of vaccination; however, there are reports that they are currently considering reducing the number of days.
Both Joshua Kimmich and Robert Lewandowski showed up at Säbener Straße on Sunday, Kimmich for four hours and Lewandowski for two hours, to get a slightly advanced start on their second half of the season preparations.
Bayern are doing their damndest to protect the players. Dr. Schmidt also confirmed that “all players, coaches, and staff members” ended the winter break either vaccinated+boostered or recently vaccinated/recovered. The club is hoping to avoid serious infection as what happened to Kimmich, according to Bild, who developed fluid in his lungs through his bout with COVID.
The club recently announced that Manuel Neuer, Kingsley Coman, Corentin Tolisso, Omar Richards, and Dino Toppmöller have all tested positive for COVID in recent days.
Bild is also reporting that Bayern haven’t decided yet on whether or not they will fly Neuer, who is actually still in Maldives, back to Munich on a private jet or if they will just let him stay for the length of his quarantine.
Bayern take the field on Friday against Borussia Mönchengladbach.