More good news on the Bayern Munich injury front!
For starters, captain Manuel Neuer resumed goalkeeper training for the first time since his knee surgery three weeks ago. According to Bild, Neuer had his goalkeeper gloves on for the entire session, and started off with some hurdle jumping and cone sprinting. He was later seen saving and parrying shots from goalkeeper coach Toni Tapalović, jumping and diving as per usual. Despite the obvious stress that the exercise would have given the knee, Neuer was able to complete them without any problems, implying that the surgery and recovery have gone very well.
Considering the fact that Neuer just started running a couple of days ago, and barely started working with the ball, this is an incredibly fast recovery. Bild appropriately named it a “Blitz-Comeback,” or a lightning comeback. Nothing but positive news have come out since Neuer’s surgery, and it looks like the captain will be ready to resume team training sooner rather than later.
It remains to be seen whether Neuer will be available for selection in the top clash against Bayer Leverkusen this coming Saturday, but it seems extremely likely that he will at least be ready for next week’s do-or-die return leg against Red Bull Salzburg in the Champions League. Even a comeback against Salzburg would be well ahead of schedule, as Neuer’s return was initially expected against Union Berlin, two matchdays from now, at the earliest. While Sven Ulreich has done a decent job filling in for his captain, Neuer’s return will truly be a blessing for the team as it continues its hunt for the Bundesliga and Champions League.
In other good news, vice captain Thomas Müller was also seen training individually as he worked on his fitness following his COVID infection last week. Müller worked with the ball, and it’s looking likely that he will resume team training soon. A prior report had said that Müller could be back with the team on Tuesday, and judging from what we’ve seen so far, that doesn’t sound too far-fetched. Müller could well be available for selection against Leverkusen as well. Although Bayern did cope well with Müller’s absence against new bogey team Eintracht Frankfurt, it’s never good to have someone like Müller away from the team for too long.
With more big games coming up, it’s very encouraging indeed to see two of Bayern’s best veterans so close to their comebacks.