Bayern return for pre-season training
The summer break is over for FC Bayern. Six weeks after their last game, the German record champions began their preparations for the 2017/18 season on Saturday. Watched by thousands of fans and wearing their new away kit, the Bayern boys finally got back to playing football again. "I'm really looking forward to the new season. We want to win lots of trophies," said an enthusiastic Carlo Ancelotti.
Preparations started in the morning for the players with a medical check. Mats Hummels, Thomas Müller and co cycled on an ergometer, did a lung function test and had a blood test before getting out onto the grass in the afternoon. Müller has already switched back to competitive mode: "It was lots of fun. There's something to play for in training games too," he told FC Bayern.tv live.
Also on the pitch were Franck Ribéry, Javi Martínez, Juan Bernat, Kingsley Coman and youngsters Christian Früchtl und Marco Friedl. The group was supplemented by standby player Tom Starke as well as some reserve players. Before the concluding training game, Martínez moved to the next pitch to work individually having broken his collarbone at the end of last season. Manuel Neuer and Jérôme Boateng were not on the pitch as they continued their rehabilitation programmes in the performance centre.
Pre-season will "go quickly"
"We're not starting with everyone but that's normal", said Ancelotti, who expects to have new signing Corentin Tolisso, Arjen Robben, Robert Lewandowski, David Alaba, Thiago, Douglas Costa and Rafinha back on 10 July. Joshua Kimmich, Renato Sanches and new signings Sebastian Rudy, Niklas Süle and recently crowned European U-21 champion Serge Gnabry are then set to report for training at the end of the month. "I'm looking forward to welcoming them," added Ancelotti.
The Italian is looking ahead to the new season with optimism. "I'm very happy with the squad. We've recruited four good players with different qualities. They'll improve the team," he said. On the subject of further signings, Ancelotti said: "We have time until 31 August but I'm very happy. We could start the season with this squad." The time between now and the start will "go quickly," knows Müller: "Before you know it it'll be August!"