From the physio table to the pitch: Injured players are coming back to training
If you’re going to suffer, at least do so in pairs in order to share the burden. This was the thought process of TSG’s injured pair, Ermin Bicakcic and Adam Szalai, who this week both worked on recovering their muscle strength in the weights room at Zuzenhausen. The Hungarian has been out for the best part of a month after picking up an adductor muscle injury. His teammate Bicakcic has been out since the first Europa League game against Sporting Braga on 14th September, when the centre back strained his cruciate ligament. “He is on the road to recovery” said the TSG team doctor, Dr. Ralph Kern. “We are hoping that Ermin will be back in first team training within the next two weeks.”
Adam Szalai, on the other hand, needs to remain patient. “He’s making progress too”, said Dr. Kern. “But I can’t say exactly when he’ll be back fit again.” The 29 year old has begun doing sessions with fitness trainer Otmar Rösch, and ball exercises have also already been integrated into the recovery program.
Similarly, Robert Zulj, the summer acquisition from SpVgg Greuther Fürth, must have patience. Due to his case of pubic symphysis, it is still unclear when the Austrian will be able to return to the team.
There is positive news regarding the attacking trio of Amiri, Demirbay, and Gnabry. After bruising his foot in the game against Schalke on matchday 6, Nadiem Amiri returned to training on Wednesday and completed the whole session. As well as Amiri, Kerem Demirbay is also back in training, after recovering from his muscle fibre injury, picked up in the Bundesliga game against Mainz. Serge Gnabry continued training alone this week due to a “muscle problem”, but is expected to be back with the rest of the team on Monday.
Lukas Rupp has also stepped on with recovery this week after bruising his pelvis in the game against SC Freiburg on matchday 7. While Mark Uth, who has been grappling with muscle problems since the Europa League game against Ludogorets, also returned to the training pitch on Wednesday.
TSG youngsters Stefan Posch and Robin Hack took some rest instead of taking part in training this week. Austrian defender Posch was unable to join the national team due to illness and remained in Zuzenhausen along with Robin Hack, who suffered a concussion in Freiburg.
The break from the Bundesliga comes as a welcome relief for Hoffenheim’s injured players and gives them time to recover. The team will then be challenged again with seven fixtures in the space of 21 days.