Leon Goretzka: I hope to get back into top form quickly

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Leon Goretzka hasn't featured for FC Bayern since the 3-2 win at Dormund in December, with persistent knee problems preventing the midfielder from returning. In an interview with fcbayern.com, the 26-year-old discusses his current condition and how hard he's working on his comeback.

Interview with Leon Goretzka

Leon, how are you and what's the latest on your injury?
"The latest is that I actually feel in top shape, but my knee is still giving me problems. Although linear running doesn't present any problems at all, I still have problems when changing direction and at certain angles - and that's the current status."

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His last competitive outing: Goretzka celebrates with his teammates in the 3-2 win at Dortmund in early December.

What exactly do your daily schedule and training plan look like at the moment?
"My day begins earlier and ends later than for the other boys. That's just part and parcel of rehab. It normally starts with treatment at 09:00 or 08:30. After the first treatment, I work out in the gym and then it's another treatment, then the second session in the afternoon and another physiotherapy treatment."

What are the next steps in the coming weeks, how's the rest of your rehab plan looking?
"Well, at the moment we're constantly managing the workload day by day in consultation with the specialists and doctors here and physiotherapists, and stepping it up a bit each day. The plan is still to treat it conservatively, with the aim of avoiding surgery - and that's what we're working on every day at the moment."

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Working hard on his comeback: Goretzka in an individual session with the fitness coaches.

How are you dealing mentally with the current situation?
"I'm 100 percent clear in my mind. I'm also using the time just so that when my knee is again doing what I want it to, I'm fully present and can help the team again as soon as possible. And that's why I'm also using this time for that, and as soon as it's working again, I hope to get back into top form very quickly."

What message can you give to the Bayern fans?
"That of course, I'm doing all I can to be back on the pitch as soon as possible, that I'm thinking day and night about how we best manage it, and I'd also like to take this opportunity to say thank you for all the well wishes and encouragement. Obviously I hope I can soon repay it all on the pitch."

Head coach Julian Nagelsmann also touched on Goretzka's fitness in his press conference ahead of the upcoming Bundesliga match against RB Leipzig: