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News in brief

Robben back early from Netherlands duty

Following on from Manuel Neuer and Philipp Lahm, Arjen Robben has also returned to Munich early from international duty. During his team-mates’ Tuesday workout on the Säbener Strasse practice ground, Robben reported to the medical unit for treatment. The Bayern winger picked up a minor ankle injury in the Netherlands’ 2–2 friendly draw with Japan last week and was ruled out of his country’s meeting with Colombia in Amsterdam on Tuesday evening. Dutch coach Louis van Gaal announced the news and released the player on Monday.

Quicker by tube for Müller and Co

The Germany national team broke new ground on Monday evening when they chose a completely new method of travel to report for training. Ahead of the final pre-match workout at Wembley in London on Monday evening, Thomas Müller, Toni Kroos, Mario Götze and Co avoided the typically bad rush-hour traffic congestion by taking the London Underground subway service from their hotel to the stadium. The Germany playing and coaching staff reached their destination after 42 minutes on the tube. However, the players will make the actual pre-match journey to the temple of football by bus.

Viktoria boss named national coach

Bayern’s Champions League Group D opponents Viktoria Plzen will soon be advertising for a new head coach. Current boss Pavel Vrba is leaving the Czech champions to become the national coach for the country that finished runners-up at EURO 1996. Vrba and Viktoria will part company on 15 December. “I’m delighted that a coach who achieved the impossible with Plzen will take his place in the dugout for the national team,” said Czech FA president Miroslav Pelta. The 49-year-old Vrba will officially take up his new position at the start of 2014.