Busy Monday at the Säbener Strasse
Pep Guardiola officially gave his players the day off on Monday, a chance for rest and regeneration after a period featuring five matches in 16 days and culminating in Saturday's accomplished 4-0 victory away to Werder Bremen. However, the prospect of a free day proved unappealing to no fewer than 11 of the FC Bayern stars who still came in for training at the Säbener Strasse facility.
Xabi Alonso, who missed the meetings with Shakhtar Donetsk and Werder due to suspension, joined youngsters Sinan Kurt and Mitchell Weiser for a football-based workout. On a nearby pitch, Thiago continued working towards a comeback with fitness coach Lorenzo Buenaventura. The Spaniard was joined by Arjen Robben, who sat out the Bremen trip with a trapped nerve. The Dutchman should be able to resume the squad programme in a matter of days.
Elsewhere, veteran striker Claudio Pizarro completed a series of running drills. The Peruvian was also denied a reunion with his former club Werder due to a sprain but is now working his way back to fitness as he looks to resume team training as soon as possible. Javi Martínez worked out on an adjacent pitch, continuing to make good progress in his sports rehab programme. The defensive midfielder completed a variety of running and coordination exercises, complemented by some light work on the ball.
There was plenty of sweat and toil on the first floor of the performance centre too, where Mehdi Benatia, Gianluca Gaudino and Holger Badstuber pursued individual training plans. The centre-back was an unused sub in Bremen and completed a punishing indoor workout on Monday in order to maintain his match fitness. Last but not least, Franck Ribéry (ankle) managed light exercise on the treadmill. No date has been set for the Frenchman to resume the squad drills.
On Tuesday, Guardiola will put the entire squad through their paces out on the practice ground. The open training session, to be broadcast LIVE with English commentary from 11:00 CET on the official FC Bayern Youtube channel, marks the start of preparations for next Sunday's top Bundesliga clash at home to third-placed Borussia Mönchengladbach.