By DAN KARELL
With the loss of Sven Bender for the next six weeks, Borussia Dortmund were handed a huge boost on Monday evening.
The German side completed their final training session ahead of their UEFA Champions League match at Zenit St. Petersburg with both Robert Lewandowski and Mats Hummels. Lewandowski had been a doubt after coming down with the flu while Hummels has been recovering from an ankle injury.
Dortmund have been hit with myriad injury problems this season, seeing nearly all of their regular starting lineup miss large chunks of the season due to injury. Centerback Neven Subotic and right winger Jakob Blaszczykowski both suffered season-ending injuries, while midfielder Ilkay Gundogan hasn’t played yet this season due to a frustrating back injury.
Lewandowski played 67 minutes in Dortmund’s surprising 3-0 defeat to Hamburg, while the German international Hummels hasn’t played since Jan. 31.
Here are some more stories to start off your Tuesday:
WELBECK SET FOR MAN UNITED RETURN
After recovering from yet another knee injury, Danny Welbeck could return to the Manchester United lineup on Tuesday.
According to reports in England, when Man United take the field in the Champions League against Olympiakos, Danny Welbeck could take the place of Juan Mata in the lineup. Mata is ineligible because he already featured for Chelsea in the Champions League group stage.
Welbeck has scored nine goals in 24 games in all competitions this season, though he hasn’t played for the Red Devils since Feb. 1. One of Welbeck’s goals this season did come in the Champions League however, in a 1-1 draw at Shakhtar Donetsk.
Instead of the original 9.5 million euros ($13.1 million), Barcelona ended up paying the Spanish high court a sum of 13.5 million euros to cover any future charges of tax dodging over the controversial Neymar transfer. (REPORT)
Fiorentina midfielder Borja Valero has been suspended for four games after making contact with the referee while protesting a red card. He’ll miss games against Juventus, Lazio, and Napoli. (REPORT)
Juventus were fined 25,000 euros after fans displayed a discriminatory banner against Torino about the Superga air disaster. (REPORT)
Atletico Paranaense announced that their new stadium, Arena da Baixada, will be ready for the World Cup on April 30, just ahead of FIFA’s final deadline of May 15. (REPORT)
A Santos supporter was brutally beaten up following a derby match between Santos and Sao Paulo and later died from his injuries. (REPORT)
What do you think of these reports? Think that both Lewy and Hummels could start? Like Man United’s chances at Olympiakos with Welbeck in the lineup? What do you think of the Neymar tax payment?
Share your thoughts below.