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Seven games in 22 days for fired-up FCB

The Bayern stars spent Tuesday working out in the performance centre, before dragging weighted sleds across the turf, sprinting till they dropped and sweating on the end of elastic ropes on Wednesday. The power sessions were the last chance to build stamina ahead of a packed early spring programme, starting with Saturday’s home fixture against FC Köln.

“We’re superbly well prepared physically,” head coach Jürgen Klinsmann informed ahead of a run of seven matches in 22 days, which could well prove decisive in the club’s competitive fortunes this term. The forthcoming fixtures include a Champions League double-header against Sporting Lisbon, a DFB Cup Round of 16 tie away to Bayer Leverkusen, and a notoriously thorny Bundesliga trip to Bremen.

“We know the coming weeks will be critical,” offered Klinsmann. However, the stars are anything but awed by the challenges ahead. “Quite the opposite,” insisted Mark van Bommel, “we’re delighted we don’t have to wait so long for the next match.” A game every three days is the desired rhythm at Germany’s most successful club. “We can do it. We’re used to chasing three trophies,” Van Bommel pointed out.