Julian Nagelsmann is set to be boosted by Sadio Mane’s return to full training with Bayern Munich this week.
Sadio Mane will return to Bayern Munich training on Sunday having missed three months with a fibula injury, but fellow forward Kingsley Coman will miss Saturday’s trip to Borussia Monchengladbach.
Mane missed Senegal’s run to the last 16 of the World Cup in Qatar after being required to undergo surgery in November.
Last month, coach Julian Nagelsmann suggested the former Liverpool man could be fit to feature in Bayern’s Champions League last-16 tie against Paris Saint-Germain, but he was not involved as the Bundesliga champions claimed a 1-0 first-leg lead in the French capital on Tuesday.
Mane is making progress in his recovery, though, and Nagelsmann believes heck could be involved in a matchday squad after as little as one week of full training.
“He will return to team training on Sunday,” Nagelsmann said of Mane on Friday. “He doesn’t have any problems anymore, and his rehab was built to give him a regular workload.
“He has to get back his technical and tactical feelings with the team, but he’s experienced, and he will be back rather quickly.
“Theoretically, he could play again after being back in team training for a week.”
Having Mane involved again will be a huge boost for the Bundesliga leaders, who take on second-placed Union Berlin after facing Monchengladbach.
However, Bayern will be without Coman at Borussia-Park on Saturday, with the Frenchman complaining of a calf issue after scoring the only goal of the game against former club PSG.
“Kingsley Coman will not be available, he will get back to practice at the start of next week,” Nagelsmann said. “Serge Gnabry will play tomorrow. He played a lot before Christmas and scored a lot.
“You need a good first XI that suits the opponent, but you also need good players that you can add to the mix. It always has to be a good balance.”
Bayern’s meeting with Gladbach will see goalkeeper Yann Sommer reunited with his former club, having made the move to Bavaria to cover for the injured Manuel Neuer in January.
“I’m very happy with his overall game. Against Paris, he was really called upon dramatically,” Nagelsmann said of Sommer, who has kept three clean sheets in his last four games for Bayern.
“The goals he conceded in the Bundesliga were not easy. With the ball, with his presence, he’s a really important part of the team.
“It will be a special game for him, against his former club. They will say farewell to him ahead of this game, and it will be a special moment, but he’s not 18 years of age, so he will be able to put that aside and deliver a strong performance.”