Kingsley Coman gave world champions France a much-needed boost after the forward returned to training with his club Bayern Munich yesterday following an absence of almost a month.
The 26-year-old missed France’s Nations League matches against Austria and Denmark in September due to a torn thigh muscle.
However, on Monday Coman was able to pass the ball around with teammates Benjamin Pavard, Dayot Upamecano and Matthijs de Ligt, earning a slap on the back from coach Julian Nagelsmann and applause from his teammates.
Bayern will be expected to make it three wins from three Champions League group matches when they host pointless Czech side Viktoria Plzen today. Nagelsmann said, though, he will save Coman for Saturday’s high-profile Bundesliga clash between his third-placed side and Borussia Dortmund – who are fourth level on points with Bayern.
“‘King’ (Coman) is fine, he does not feel any pain,” said Nagelsmann at his eve of match press conference.
“After the group training session, he trained on his own.
“Tomorrow is not an option.
“We will increase his training programme and he will be an option for us for Dortmund.”
Coman’s return is welcome news for France who are struggling both on the pitch and off it with several stars injured and battling to be fit for the World Cup finals which begin in Qatar in less than two months.
Paul Pogba, who scored in the 4-2 win over Croatia in the 2018 World Cup final, is among the players sidelined and another key midfielder N’Golo Kante also missed the recent Nations League matches through injury.
Presnel Kimpembe, Lucas and Theo Hernandez, Lucas Digne and captain and first-choice goalkeeper Hugo Lloris were other absentees from the Nations League matches which were coach Didier Deschamps final preparation games before the World Cup.
Bayern Munich’s forward Kingsley Coman runs during a training session in Munich yesterday, on the eve of the UEFA Champions League match against Viktoria Plzen. (AFP)