Created on 05-10-2012 at 00:00 AM
Bayern will be without Arjen Robben in Saturday afternoon’s home meeting with 1899 Hoffenheim. The Dutch winger is still struggling with the hamstring problem which prevented him appearing in the recent matches against Borisov and Wolfsburg. “It's a real shame he won't be in the team tomorrow," Jupp Heynckes said on Friday.
After the team’s return from Minsk on Wednesday afternoon, Robben resumed the squad training programme. “He was in outstanding form for 40 or 45 minutes," Heynckes revealed, “and then he suddenly told me he was feeling the same pain in the same place." Robben immediately broke off the session and reported to chief medical officer Dr Hans-Wilhelm Muller-Wohlfahrt. A week earlier, in the home meeting with Wolfsburg, the player was substituted after sensing the injury.
Heynckes is now hoping Arjen can use the two-week international break “to regain 100 percent fitness, and return for our next Bundesliga match." Netherlands boss Louis van Gaal has not called the winger up for World Cup qualifiers against Andorra and Romania.
Franck Ribéry is also a doubt for the Hoffenheim clash. The Frenchman has a tight calf after taking a knock in Minsk last Tuesday. The definite absentees are Mario Gomez (sports rehab training) and David Alaba (stress fracture).
Alaba is at least back in training with the rest of the team. “I can kick the ball properly again and it doesn't hurt," the 20-year-old was reported as saying in the Austrian press. “Naturally I still lack 10 to 20 percent in terms of freshness and ball control, which is why I'm doing extra training."
Friendly next Thursday
Speeding up Alaba's recovery is one of the reasons Heynckes has arranged a friendly for next Thursday, 11 October. “All the players who are here and fit will play, including David, I hope," said the coach. After the workout, Heynckes will speak with Austria coach Marcel Koller “and discuss whether it makes sense for him to join up with the national team." The Austrians play Kazakhstan in Vienna on 16 October, but Alaba is currently only on standby for the game.