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Injury Sidelines Robert Lewandowski From Crucial Poland, Bayern Fixtures

Robert Lewandowski

BEVERLY HILLS, March 29, (THEWILL) – It is increasingly clear that the current FIFA’s Best Men’s player, the Polish striker Robert Lewandowski, will miss Poland’s upcoming Qatar 2022 World Cup qualifying Group I clash against the Three Lions of England. This unfortunate setback for the Poles comes after it was confirmed the clinical goal machine damaged ligaments in his knee after a quality display against Andorra on Sunday where he netted a brace.

The 32-year-old, who has continued the sterling form that helped Bundesliga giants Bayern Munich to a historic sextuplet of titles last season and has not waned in scoring for both club and country in that period, had to be subbed off just after the hour mark, to the worrying concern of Poles and Bayern fans alike across the world.

The implication for Paulo Sousa’s team now is how to prosecute the next fixture of the qualification series against Gareth Southgate’s squad without their talismanic forward, given the form of the English side, who are now on a 23-match unbeaten run in Euro World Cup qualifying series.

There is also the possibility that, depending on how soon Lewandowski can return to full-blown match fitness, he might miss some of Bayern’s vital fixtures when domestic league football resumes after the international break in the Bundesliga and also in the UEFA Champions League competition.

The official statement from the website of the Polish Football Association, on the condition of the striker, read: “Robert Lewandowski will not play in Wednesday’s 2022 World Cup qualifying match against England in London due to an injury. Clinical tests have shown damage to the collateral ligament of the right knee.

“The short time remaining until the next match excludes the participation of the national team captain in this match. This would carry too much risk of aggravating the injury.

“This decision is the only right one, bearing in mind the upcoming Euro 2020 tournament. Treatment of this type of injury usually lasts from five to 10 days. Therefore, Robert Lewandowski will return to Bayern Munich, where he will undergo further rehabilitation.”

Bayern will seek to get him back as quickly as possible. The Pole remains in contention again this year for the prestigious Balloon d’Or award, which he was on course to claim in his incredibly remarkable 2019/2020 season before the organisers cancelled the ceremony because of the disruption to world football due to the coronavirus pandemic.

As he will be sitting out some of the biggest games for club and country, the Bundesliga club will be sweating out his fitness in just the same way as the Polish national team, who could have fancied their chances against a creative English team with the striker in their squad. It makes facing England much tougher, as the Poles are already behind by two points because of their opening draw against Hungary.

Lewandowski’s equaliser in that match helped to rescue a point and his brace in the second fixture against Andorra was good for their 3-0 victory. However, in his absence, the group leaders, England,  could open up a five-point lead in Group I with a victory against the Lewandowski-absent Polish.

And on the club front, Bayern could also be Lewandowski-handicapped in their first-versus-second clash in the Bundesliga against title rivals RB Leipzig, who have shone brilliantly this season in the German League. If he does not recover on time, he may also miss the first leg of their Champions League quarter-final, what pundits have referred to as “a rematch of last year’s final” against Paris Saint-Germain.

Although there are plenty quality options of players for the Polish and Bayern coaches to pick from in Lewandowski’s place to execute the roles in the central attacking segment properly, there are none currently of the Lewandowski cloth, who can render any defenses redundant whilst finding a way to score however compact the backline is.