Robert Lewandowski has returned to full Bayern Munich training after recovering from knee ligament damage.
Bayern’s superstar striker has not played since Poland’s 3-0 World Cup qualifying win over Andorra on March 28.
But after nearly a month out, the club confirmed on Wednesday Lewandowski “completed the majority of full training”, with coach Hansi Flick optimistic he could feature at Mainz on Saturday.
Bayern also had Serge Gnabry, returning from coronavirus, and Corentin Tolisso, out since February with a thigh injury, back in light training.
The defending Bundesliga champions can clinch another title this weekend and would be delighted to welcome back Lewandowski.
Despite missing several weeks, the 32-year-old still leads all players in Europe’s ‘top five’ leagues in goals (42) and goal involvements (50) in all competitions.
Lewandowski has scored with 28.8 per cent of his shots across 36 matches, although he has also missed 25 Opta-defined ‘big chances’. Only Duvan Zapata (29) and Cristiano Ronaldo (27) have squandered more, though this is likely down to the sheer number of chances that come their way.
Of his goals, 35 have come in the Bundesliga, putting Lewandowski just five shy of Gerd Muller’s 1971-72 record of 40, albeit now with only four games remaining.
The domestic competition will be Lewandowski’s sole focus after Bayern exited the Champions League to Paris Saint-Germain on away goals in his absence.
Lewandowski was badly missed as Bayern scored just three goals from 45 shots and eight ‘big chances’ over the two legs. In the 3-2 home defeat, their 31 attempts were worth 3.8 expected goals, meaning they should have netted roughly twice as many they did.
Not since Galatasaray lost 4-1 to Arsenal in December 2014 despite 32 efforts had a team been beaten while attempting 30 shots or more in a Champions League game that did not go to extra time.
Back-up Eric Maxim Choupo-Moting scored home and away against his former club, however, and had four goals in six games while Lewandowski was out.
Only Gerard Moreno (six), Kylian Mbappe and Memphis Depay (both five) in the ‘top five’ leagues netted more in all competitions over this period.