Created on 22-04-2008 at 00:00 AM
With Thursday’s UEFA Cup semi-final first leg against Zenit St. Petersburg looming on the horizon, Bayern have run into serious selection problems in the goal-getting department. Prolific leading scorer Luca Toni is a definite absentee against the Russian champions with a one-match ban for reaching five bookings in the competition, and now a question-mark hangs over his regular strike partner Miroslav Klose.
The Germany international missed training on Tuesday with a painful inflammation of the foot, a reaction to a knock received in the DFB Cup final. Klose reported to the medical unit for treatment, and is rated doubtful for the match in front of a capacity Allianz Arena crowd on Thursday.
Van Bommel: Squad has depth
Lukas Podolski and Jan Schlaudraff are thus the only fit strikers at the club. “Luca’s on a roll and it’s a shame he can’t play on Thursday,” commented Mark van Bommel, although the Dutch midfielder is far from downbeat. “We have a good squad and we can cope. We’ve been able to compensate for every absence up to now, regardless of who it’s been.“
”Luca’s contributed a huge amount to the team recently, and we’ll definitely miss him,” Podolski remarked, “but the players picked to appear up front will just have to go out and get the goals instead.“
Podolski himself has five goals to his name in Europe so far this term. “If I was to score on Thursday I’d be delighted as usual. But it’s more important we get a decent result,” added the man who has just become a father for the first time. A “decent result” would be any kind of win without conceding a goal.
Franck Ribéry was another absentee from training on Tuesday, but the France star is not rated doubtful for Thursday. Instead, the hard-running midfielder was advised to rest after the arduous 120-minute Cup final in Berlin.