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Noussair Mazraoui “got really tired going up the stairs” after COVID-19 — updates on Bayern Munich’s defense from Julian Nagelsmann

It doesn’t sound as serious as Davies’ issue last year...hopefully that won’t change.

France v Morocco: Semi Final - FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022 Photo by Harry Langer/DeFodi Images via Getty Images

During a press conference taking place in Bayern Munich’s Doha based training camp, club manager Julian Nagelsmann was asked about defender Noussair Mazraoui’s post-COVID pericardium inflammation and how the club was planning to deal with his enforced absence.

According to Nagelsmann, Mazraoui had been struggling during training and even got tired while climbing up a flight of stairs, obvious signs of something being wrong. That’s why they required a check up — leading to the discovery of Mazraoui’s ailment.

“Luckily, it’s not as dramatic as [when Alphonso Davies contracted myocarditis after getting sick with COVID],” Nagelsmann explained. “We will continue to monitor the pericardium and, in short time periods, likely every 10 days or so, use controlled ultra sonic to monitor the inflammation.”

Fortunately, Nagelsmann explained, the peak of the inflammation has already been reached and that things will only get better from here. Of course, there was no good time for such an absence to occur.

“It’s a shame that we will lose Mazraoui just as he was building momentum, having adapted and added a lot of quality to our defense,” the coach continued.

In Mazraoui’s absence, it will fall on Josip Stanisic and Benjamin Pavard to duel it out for the right back position. And while Pavard might seem the odds-on favorite, don’t count out the young Croatian.

“Stani is positionally very sound, listens very well, is developing, has extended his contract and we all are very happy to have him,” Nagelsmann enthused.

The coach also touched on Pavard’s situation — and all the questions that have surrounded it.

“Benji is someone who prefers to play in the center but can also play out wide. I’ve probably had 17 discussions with him about this. Then there is all the media controversy, with whether he should play in the center or not and if he should extend his contract or not or if he should go or not. There is so much loosely translated from French and then it sounds so dramatic. I have a good relationship with Pavard,” Nagelsmann said.

Nagelsmann finished this segment without committing to either players as a starter. (That sound you’re hearing? It’s Joshua Kimmich’s sigh of relief.)

“One of two will play at right back, but neither can play every game. Therefore both will get game time. No decision has been made yet,” Nagelsmann concluded, before adding with a smile: “Perhaps they can both duel here in Qatar.”

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