'All in all, I can be very satisfied'
Javi Martinez made 43 appearances for Bayern last season, mainly operating alongside Bastian Schweinsteiger in central defensive midfield, and making a major contribution to Munich's stunning treble triumph. However, FCB are currently without the Spanish world and European champion, as Javi is currently recovering from groin surgery. Happily, the 25-year-old is making good progress, as he told fcbayern.de in our exclusive interview.
“I'm back out on the pitch, I'm getting through running and sprint exercise, and I'll soon have the ball back at my feet," said the player, who is hoping to resume parts of the team training schedule next week. Having watched his team-mates in action in recent matches, Martinez is impressed with what he has seen: “The team has improved from match to match, and we're putting the coach’s ideas into practice better and better. We’re not at 100 percent yet, but we're on course to get there."
Interview: Javi Martinez
fcbayern.de: Javi, you had a groin operation five weeks ago. How are you feeling at the moment?
Javi Martinez: Very good, thank you. The operation went well, and my sports rehab programme is on schedule. I'm back out on the pitch, I'm getting through running and sprint exercise, and I'll soon have the ball back at my feet. On top of that, I have a tailored fitness schedule, to build up power and to stabilise the groin and all the muscles connected to the hips. All in all, I can be very satisfied.
What are the next steps in your sports rehab programme?
We're going to increase the training load over the next few days as we slowly but surely get back to 100 percent, although we're taking it very carefully so we avoid setbacks. I need to keep working on my muscle strength. I think - and I hope - I should be able to resume the team training programme step-by-step in the course of next week.
When do you think you might be playing again?
I can't answer the question yet. The important thing for now is to continue training with no reaction to the injury, and get back to a normal training rhythm. What I need now is training, training, and more training, so I quickly recover my form. Obviously, I want to be part of it again as fast as possible, but we mustn't go over the top. And at the end of the day, the coach decides when I play again.
Even in your absence, the team has played superb football at times in the last few weeks. What you think of recent performances?
We've really been playing very, very well. The team has improved from match to match, as we put the coach’s ideas into practice better and better. We're not at 100 percent yet, but we're on course to get there.
Have you been staying close to your team-mates during your time on the sidelines?
Yes, we've remained in close contact, even though I've not been able to train with the team and I've not been on the away trips. This is a very tight-knit group, they don't shun or leave out injured players. And I've not been completely alone either, as I’ve often worked out in the Performance Center with Thiago and Mario Götze.
Spain play Belarus in World Cup qualifying on Friday evening. Will your national team book their place at the World Cup?
I'm very much hoping so. We have a good chance, because if we win we’re as good as through. I'll definitely be watching the match, rooting for the team, and also hoping I'll be part of it again very soon.