Bayern Munich midfielder Thiago Alcantara has undergone groin surgery that is expected to rule him out for the rest of the 2019/20 Bundesliga season, although his club reserve hope that he might yet return in time for the DFB-Pokal final against Bayer Leverkusen next month.
Thiago has enjoyed another strong season at Bayern but has only started one of the club’s six Bundesliga and cup games as a result of a groin strain since German football resumed.
The Spaniard, who joined Bayern from Barcelona back in 2013, missed three consecutive Bundesliga games at the end of May – including the potentially decisive win over Borussia Dortmund – and has only appeared from the bench against Leverkusen and Eintracht Frankfurt this month.
Speaking to the gathered media on Friday afternoon as Bayern prepare for the weekend fixture against Borussia Monchengladbach, coach Hansi Flick confirmed Thiago has gone under the knife in a bid to try and fix the troublesome problem.
“Thiago has had an operation on his groin, he will be out for three weeks,” Flick said. “We made the decision to do this now. It’s possible he will be back for the cup final.”
With a seven-point lead over Dortmund at the top of the Bundesliga and just four games remaining, Bayern need only match Dortmund’s next two results to secure an eighth successive title – no team in the history of German football has previously exerted this level of unbroken dominance.
Bayern booked their place in the DFB-Pokal final on Wednesday night by narrowly beating Frankfurt in Munich – the 2-1 win was decided by a 69th minute Robert Lewandowski goal.
The final is scheduled for 4 July after the end of the Bundesliga campaign and will see Bayern face Leverkusen, whom they beat 4-2 earlier this month, at the Olympiastadion in Berlin. A potential 11th domestic league and cup double this century awaits.