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Five forced to rest

Squad hit by spate of minor injuries

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There were a few spare seats on the Bayern team bus when the vehicle left the Öschberghof hotel for the practice ground at the Anton-Mall stadium on Saturday afternoon. A spate of minor injuries meant that no fewer than five of the senior squad were obliged to sit out the penultimate session of this summer's training camp in Donaueschingen.

One of them was star signing Franck Ribery, as the Frenchman was left nursing a bruised thigh after the morning workout. Youngsters Christian Lell and Stephan Fürstner were ruled out with similar problems in the calf area.

Not unexpected

Hamit Altintop sat out the session with a painful knee, while Mark van Bommel had already scaled back his efforts on Friday after feeling a twinge from his Achilles. "In every case, it's a result of the demanding training programme of the last few days," assistant coach Michael Henke informed The quintet reported to fitness coach Thomas Wilhelmi for a minimal workout at the hotel in the afternoon.

None of the five was carrying a more serious injury, Henke confirmed, although it remains a possibility that the players will be rested for Sunday's friendly in Albstadt as a precaution. Van Bommel is rated the most serious doubt of the group. A decision regarding the Dutchman and the remaining injured players will be left until Sunday morning. Head coach Ottmar Hitzfeld and his staff will certainly be unwilling to take any risks at this embryonic stage of the campaign.