There’s good news on the injury front for Bayern Munich! Both Sadio Mane and Noussair Mazraoui resumed team training for Die Roten earlier today (Thursday) for the first time since recovering from their respective injury and health problems. Mane had been sidelined ever since sustaining a knee injury during Bayern’s 6-1 win over Werder Bremen back in the beginning of November that prevented him from going to the World Cup in Qatar with Senegal while Mazraoui had been suffering from a bout of pericarditis ever since returning from the World Cup with Morocco.
The two players received a very warm welcome from the rest of the squad at Sabener Strasse as they prep for Sunday’s massive clash against Union Berlin in the Bundesliga that will have massive title ramifications. That encounter just might be too early to rush either player back, but resuming team training is a massive step in the right direction for the pair of long-term absentees.
Special welcome for Mazraoui and Mané by the team [ @FCBayern] pic.twitter.com/hlgSj96SrS— Bayern & Germany (@iMiaSanMia) February 23, 2023
For Julian Nagelsmann, having both players back for the crunch part of the season will be a massive relief, as he is already having to deal with not having Lucas Hernandez and Manuel Neuer for the rest of the season through their respective injury problems.
Not to mention, Benjamin Pavard will not be available for the second leg of the Champions League round of 16 since he was given his marching order during the first leg against Paris Saint-Germain by virtue of a second yellow card from a second half, sliding tackle on Lionel Messi where he didn’t make enough contact with the ball. Because of that, Nagelsmann has the difficult decision on his hands of whether or not he will just slot Mazraoui right in at right back, or choose to do something else, since he now also has Joao Cancelo to choose from.
Nagelsmann has been using a back three system with two wing backs in recent weeks, so both Mane and Mazraoui can have their place in that type of setup depending on what other personnel Nagelsmann chooses to field for any particular starting eleven. For him, it’s all about getting the balance and rotations right ahead of a tricky fixture list that includes Union Berlin, leg two against PSG, two back-to-back matchups against SC Freiburg between the league and DFB-Pokal, and league matchups against both Borussia Dortmund and Bayer Leverkusen.