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Injured Ribery likely to miss season start

28 July 2009 13:05

BERLIN (AFP) - Bayern Munich's French star Franck Ribery is likely to be unavailable for the first match of the Bundesliga season on August 8 against Hoffenheim, the club said on Tuesday.

The 26-year-old midfielder has had a succession of medical problems since he resumed training at the beginning of this month, including blistered feet and a knee injury, preventing him from joining in full training since July 12.

"Franck has a lot of catching-up to do. He trained hard and went further than last week but it has been limited nevertheless," said Bayern manager Louis Van Gaal on the club's website.

The Dutchman added that if Ribery did play in the Hoffenheim match, it would be for a maximum of 20 minutes.

The France international will also miss the first round of the German Cup next Sunday when Bayern play Neckaretz.

Other Munich players on the injured list are Croatian striker Ivica Olic and fellow forward Luca Toni of Italy who has a damaged Achilles tendon.

The giant south German club has rejected approaches for Ribery during the off-season, notably from Real Madrid who baulked at Bayern's asking price of 80 million euros.

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