Ribery ready but Sanches to miss Bayern´s clash with Schalke

28 February 2017 13:58

Carlo Ancelotti has confirmed that Franck Ribery is fit to face Schalke on Wednesday, although Renato Sanches and David Alaba could both miss out.

Ribery has not played since the 2-1 win at Werder Bremen on January 28 as a result of a muscle strain, although he was on the bench for last Saturday’s 8-0 thrashing of Hamburg.

Bayern face a hectic first week in March, with Wednesday’s DFB-Pokal quarter-final followed by a Bundesliga trip to Cologne and the Champions League last-16 second leg with Arsenal in the space of seven days.

Ancelotti is therefore ready to give Douglas Costa a rest and hand Ribery his chance to impress against Markus Weinzierl’s side.

“I might give Costa a break. Ribery is fit, he has no problems and is ready to play,” he told a news conference.

More concerning for Bayern is that Sanches has been ruled out with illness, while Alaba has picked up a knock and could be unavailable.

“David Alaba has a slight problem,” Ancelotti said. “Renato Sanches has a cold and will miss the match.”

As for centre-back Jerome Boateng, Ancelotti expects the match at the Emirates Stadium to be the earliest point at which he will return from a lengthy lay-off with a shoulder injury.

“Physically he is fit but we’re still waiting for the signal from the medical department. He might come back against Arsenal,” he said.

Bayern were held to a 1-1 draw when Schalke visited the Allianz Arena in the Bundesliga this month, but Ancelotti believes the emphatic win over Hamburg has given his players additional belief as they attempt to keep their treble hopes alive.

“The match against Hamburg has given us confidence,” he added. “We want to reach the semi-final. We have quality in the team but the most important thing is that the team is focused on this game.”


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