Keylor Navas returned but Marco Verratti was left out of the Paris Saint-Germain line-up for the Champions League final against Bayern Munich, who benched Ivan Perisic for Kinglsey Coman.

After sitting out the semi-final against RB Leipzig with a hamstring injury sustained in the prior round against Atalanta, Navas was deemed fit enough to take his place in goal back from Sergio Rico.

PSG coach Thomas Tuchel said in his pre-match news conference Verratti was in contention to start but would not be able to play 90 or 120 minutes due to the calf problem with which he has been struggling.

The Italy international was subsequently named among the substitutes, with Ander Herrera, Marquinhos and Leandro Paredes in midfield for the Ligue 1 champions.

Bayern likewise made no changes to midfield, with Thiago Alcantara keeping his place as Joshua Kimmich continued at right-back, Benjamin Pavard fit enough only for the bench after battling a metatarsal ligament injury.

Hansi Flick opted to bring in former PSG winger Coman for Perisic, though, despite the France international having not started the quarter-final or semi-final wins over Barcelona and Lyon.

Benjamin Pavard moved to explain himself after criticism of his comment that Bayern Munich "don't have to be afraid" of Paris Saint-Germain.

Bayern and PSG will meet in the Champions League final at the Estadio da Luz on Sunday, with Pavard in contention to start for the first time in Portugal after sustaining an ankle injury in training last month.

After Hansi Flick's side overcame Lyon in the semi-finals, the World Cup-winning defender declared they held no fear of any team.

Frenchman Pavard's remarks sparked a strong reaction, but he clarified his feeling that you cannot worry about any opponent in a game like the Champions League final.

"Paris are a great team, very complete in all positions. They did a really good job, with very good signings," Pavard told RMC Sport.

"In my head, in a final, if you're afraid of playing a final against PSG, Real Madrid or whoever, you might as well stay at home.

"People are free to think what they want. We have a final to prepare for."

Bayern have won their past 20 matches across all competitions and thrashed Barcelona 8-2 in the quarter-finals.

"[There is calmness] regarding our results, our way of playing, the coach, I think. There is a very good atmosphere in the team," said Pavard.

"Getting there and losing in the final, I don't imagine it at all. I hope to lift the trophy with the whole team.

"I'm very happy to be in the final, but if it's to lose it, I won't. It's useless."

Barcelona are not considering an exit for Lionel Messi as a decision on the star's future nears.

Messi, 33, has been linked with a move away from the LaLiga giants after a trophy-less 2019-20 season.

But the star may yet remain at Barcelona.

 

TOP STORY – BARCELONA NOT CONSIDERING MESSI EXIT

Messi's rumoured departure from Camp Nou is not on the agenda at all for Barca, according to Mundo Deportivo.

The cover of the Spanish daily reads: "Untransferable".

Messi is contracted at Barcelona until 2021 and Sport reports a decision on his future is expected in the next few days, with the club beginning pre-season training on August 30.

The six-time Ballon d'Or winner reportedly considers an exit difficult due to his €700million release clause.

 

ROUND-UP

- Another player who has been linked to Barcelona is Lautaro Martinez, but the Inter star could head elsewhere. The Sun reports Martinez is Manchester City's number one target.

- Chelsea may be getting closer to strengthening their defence. The Premier League giants are close to agreeing a £50m deal for Leicester City left-back Ben Chilwell, according to The Athletic. Meanwhile, Goal reports Chelsea have been offered Paris Saint-Germain centre-back Thiago Silva on a free transfer.

- At Manchester United, the talk has been around adding firepower in attack. The Manchester Evening News reports Lyon forward Moussa Dembele is not ruling out a move this close season, having been linked to United previously.

- More changes are expected at Juventus. Fabrizio Romano reports the Serie A champions want to terminate the contracts of Gonzalo Higuain and Sami Khedira, who both have a year left to run on their deals.

- Benjamin Pavard has impressed for Bayern Munich, leading to interest from his homeland. L'Equipe reports Paris Saint-Germain are interested in the France international defender.

- Linked with a move away from Tottenham, Serge Aurier could head to Italy. La Gazzetta dello Sport reports Milan want the right-back.

Benjamin Pavard resumed light training on Monday in a boost for Bayern Munich ahead of their Champions League semi-final against Lyon.

The defender injured a metatarsal ligament last month and played no part in the 8-2 quarter-final destruction of Barcelona in Lisbon.

Pavard only travelled to Portugal to link up with the squad last Thursday after having stayed in Munich to receive treatment.

Bayern said in a statement that he was able to complete part of team training at the Cidade do Futebol, the home of the Portugal national team.

The France international is unlikely to be fully fit for Wednesday's game against Lyon, but his return to training will give coach Hansi Flick some hope that he could be involved or at least ready should Bayern reach the final.

Joshua Kimmich was moved to right-back against Barca in Pavard's absence, with Thiago Alcantara and Leon Goretzka paired at the heart of midfield.

Lyon, who beat Manchester City 3-1 to reach the last four, will face Bayern in a repeat of the 2009-10 semi-final, which the Bundesliga champions won 4-0 on aggregate.

Hansi Flick was delighted to see Niklas Sule make a long-awaited comeback from injury as Bayern Munich tuned up for the Champions League by beating Marseille in Friday's friendly.

Germany defender Sule has not played since October after rupturing an anterior cruciate ligament, although he was among the substitutes for the DFB-Pokal final triumph over Bayer Leverkusen.

The centre-back replaced Jerome Boateng just after the hour in the 1-0 victory over Marseille at Bayern's academy campus, where Serge Gnabry scored the only goal of the game.

Sule getting minutes is a timely boost for Flick as Bayern prepare to face Chelsea in the second leg of their delayed Champions League last-16 contest on August 8, a tie in which they lead 3-0.

"We are all very happy. He [Sule] worked hard to get back on the pitch," Flick said.

"He more than deserved to be back on the pitch."

Benjamin Pavard injured his metatarsal in training this week, and Flick said Bayern will continue to monitor when the France defender can return.

"First of all we have to play against Chelsea, which I think will be relatively close," Flick added when asked about Pavard.

"Anything that comes after that, we'll worry about when we've fully opened the door to the quarter-finals."

The injury situation meant Joshua Kimmich playing at right-back against Marseille and Flick was happy with what he saw from the supremely gifted Germany international.

"It was of course a change. Also back in midfield with Thiago [Alcantara], who was previously injured," Flick said.

"He also worked hard in his free time. Josh always gave impulses on the right side and closed his side defensively. I'm very happy with that too."

Benjamin Pavard has suffered a metatarsal ligament injury and is out "for the foreseeable future," Bayern Munich have announced.

The defender was forced out of a team training session on Sunday and will now almost certainly miss the club's Champions League last-16 game against Chelsea on August 8.

Bayern hold a 3-0 lead going into the second leg of that tie but Pavard's likely absence is a blow for Hansi Flick's men, who harbour hopes of winning the competition after finishing their Bundesliga campaign in fine form.

Reports in Germany indicate Pavard sustained the foot issue when he attempted to block a cross during a practice game.

"Bayern will have to manage without Benjamin Pavard for the foreseeable future," read a club statement.

"The German record champions' right-back was forced to abandon team training on Sunday morning with an injury.

"A thorough examination by the Bayern medical unit revealed a ligament injury to the left tarsal."

Pavard's absence means Flick will have to change the back four that helped secure victory over Bayer Leverkusen in the DFB-Pokal final earlier this month.

The head coach will have the chance to his assess his options - including the fit-again Niklas Sule - in Friday's friendly against Marseille at the FC Bayern Campus.

Bayern Munich are awaiting updates after Benjamin Pavard suffered an injury two weeks out from the Champions League last-16 second leg against Chelsea.

Pavard reportedly injured his ankle in a training game on Sunday and had to cut the session short to receive treatment.

The scare comes as Bayern step up preparations for their August 8 clash with Frank Lampard's side in Munich, where they will look to defend a 3-0 lead from the first game.

"Benjamin Pavard sustained an injury," head coach Hansi Flick confirmed in a media conference after training on Sunday.

"We are not quite sure exactly what happened, we will have to wait for the diagnosis now. We're not quite sure how long he will be missing, or if he will be missing. We will have to wait and see."

There was better news for Niklas Sule, who continues to work his way back from a serious knee injury.

The centre-back has not played since rupturing an anterior cruciate ligament in October, although he did make the bench for the DFP-Pokal final win over Bayer Leverkusen this month.

Sule, 24, put in extra training time while his team-mates took a break after that match and the Germany international could get the chance to prove his fitness in a friendly against Marseille on Friday.

"I'm very happy with him, with the way he's training and the intensity he's training with," Flick said.

"I assume he's at 100 per cent, we've been working on that. During the holiday, he stayed here and worked with our staff, so he is on track.

"He's missing match practice, but we possibly have the opportunity for him to play against Marseille. We shall see what happens."

New signings Leroy Sane and Tanguy Kouassi are ineligible to face Chelsea and will not be used in the Marseille match, but Flick has been happy with how the pair have adapted to their surroundings.

"All of the new players have integrated well," he said. "For them, it's a new environment so they might need a little time, but I'm very happy with how things are going.

"With Kouassi, we all know that he's an outstanding football player and that we will greatly benefit from him.

"We know in the last few months he's had a couple of injury problems, so we are all hoping that, following this recent injury, he can train pain-free, possibly play. We will have to see what happens in the next couple of days and see what happens.

"I can only confirm that the new signings will not play against Marseille or in the Champions League."

Bayern Munich defender Benjamin Pavard said he was dreaming of winning the Champions League to seal a treble this season.

Hansi Flick's side are on track to win the Bundesliga and are in the DFB-Pokal semi-finals, while they are also in the Champions League last 16.

Pavard, who only arrived at Bayern from Stuttgart ahead of this season, said he was eyeing a treble.

"We have a very good squad, we are performing well in the cup and in the Bundesliga," the France international told beIN SPORTS on Sunday.

"We must continue like this. Bayern must win the championship and the cup every year.

"And the Champions League, we dream of it and we want to make the treble."

While Pavard has played 39 games this season, Bayern are reportedly looking for a right-back and plan to use the Frenchman in the centre of defence in the long-term.

The former Lille man said he was focused on winning titles with Bayern despite talk about his position.

"I signed for five years at Bayern, I play my matches, I am performing and I will do everything to improve further. And I want to win a lot of titles," Pavard said.

"I don't know yet what the future holds, we know that in football it can go very quickly, but I don't ask myself many questions."

Bayern are seven points clear atop the Bundesliga, while they claimed a 3-0 win over Chelsea in the first leg of their Champions League last-16 tie before the season was suspended due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Bayern Munich faced little resistance as they stormed to a 5-0 victory over Fortuna Dusseldorf to go 10 points clear at the Bundesliga summit.

A 1-0 win against Borussia Dortmund – who play their game in hand against Paderborn on Sunday – last Tuesday gave Bayern a seven-point cushion at the top and they took another step towards an eighth straight title at the Allianz Arena on Saturday.

Mathias Jorgensen bundled a shot from Benjamin Pavard into his own goal in the 15th minute and the World Cup-winning right-back headed home a Joshua Kimmich corner before the half-hour mark.

Robert Lewandowski finished off a sweeping team move two minutes before half-time and added a second within five minutes of the restart, with Alphonso Davies completing the rout two minutes later.

Dusseldorf were unable to keep Bayern out for long. Thomas Muller's delivery to the back post was centred by Serge Gnabry with a brilliant first touch and Pavard's attempt was diverted into the net by Jorgensen.

Goalkeeper Florian Kastenmeier got down to his left to turn a volley from Muller behind, but he was unable to keep out Pavard's powerful header from the resulting corner in the 29th minute.

Bayern scored a brilliant third before half-time. Lewandowski's flick released Kimmich, who cut the ball back to Muller and he teed up the Poland striker to sweep into the net.

Lewandowski doubled his tally by instinctively using his trailing leg to steer Gnabry's driven cross home between the legs of Kastenmeier.

The onslaught continued when Davies dispossessed Kevin Stoger on the edge of the Dusseldorf box and slid a shot underneath Kastenmeier.

Andre Hoffman missed the target with a header and Niko Giesselmann was kept out by Manuel Neuer in rare chances for Dusseldorf, but they were able to stop Hansi Flick's side adding to the score as they continued what looks sure to be a march to glory.

 

What does it mean? Lewandowski completes the set

In his sixth Bundesliga game against Dusseldorf, Lewandowski finally scored his first goal in a meeting with them.

Although he was unable to complete his hat-trick from close range in the 70th minute, the prolific 31-year-old has now been on target against all 18 clubs playing in Germany's top flight this season.

Lewandowski has also scored 43 goals in 37 games in all competitions in 2019-20, equalling his personal best from 2016-17.

Delightful Davies

It was another exemplary display from converted left-back Davies. He used his incredible pace to halt a counter-attack ahead of Bayern's opener and made a last-ditch block to deny Kenan Karaman a goal in the 33rd minute, before helping put the game beyond doubt early in the second half.

Jorgensen has a day to forget

Things got off to a bad start for the Denmark international with an own goal and he continued to be ran ragged at the back. He failed to track Lewandowski on his first, was not quick enough to get across to stop the striker getting a second and failed to prevent Davies barrelling through when Bayern got their fifth.

What's next?

Bayern face a tricky trip to Bayer Leverkusen next Saturday, while Dusseldorf are at home to Hoffenheim on the same day.

Bayern Munich recommenced their Bundesliga title defence with a 2-0 win at Union Berlin, with Robert Lewandowski reaching the 40-goal mark for a fifth successive season on his return from a knee injury.

Hansi Flick's men had been put under a little pressure by Borussia Dortmund's 4-0 thrashing of Schalke on Saturday to go within a point of the pacesetters, but Bayern picked up where they left off before the coronavirus pause – Lewandowski and Benjamin Pavard securing the points.

Although Bayern were guilty of a somewhat slow start, once they found their groove the champions played some fine football and were deserving of the lead when Lewandowski – who likely would have missed most of the rest of the season were it not for the lengthy hiatus – rolled home his penalty with 40 minutes played.

Although the visitors failed to pile on the misery against a Union side who offered little in attack after the first 10 minutes, they did eventually wrap up the victory late on with Pavard's header, Flick's side restoring their four-point cushion.

Union looked the sharper of the two sides in the early exchanges, with Marius Bulter testing Manuel Neuer and Anthony Ujah sending a rasping drive just over.

But Bayern grew into the encounter – Thomas Muller having a goal disallowed for offside in the 19th minute, before Union goalkeeper Rafal Gikiewicz got just enough on Alphonso Davies' low cross to prevent Lewandowski a tap-in.

Their dominance eventually paid off late in the first half, as Neven Subotic clumsily caught Leon Goretzka in the box while attempting to clear and Lewandowski confidently slotted in the spot-kick.

The contest followed a similar pattern after the restart and Bayern nearly got a second – Goretzka lashing a fierce strike just wide of the bottom-left corner after a one-two with the excellent Thomas Muller.

Union's hopes of rescuing a late draw were ended when Pavard headed in Joshua Kimmich's right-wing with 10 minutes to go.

What does it mean? Bayern have little problem producing a response

Dortmund win on Saturday was impressive and will have given Bayern a reminder that they are up for a fight, but Die Roten's performance on Sunday was laudable for different reasons.

Despite having over two months off and coming back against a physical side, some of Bayern's football was gorgeous. While they only managed two goals, you never got the impression they were playing at full tilt.

Muller a delight

While he will not necessarily get the plaudits, Muller was in fine form on Sunday. The experienced forward regularly popped up in dangerous spaces and his use of the ball was excellent, summed up by his two key passes – one being a clever improvised effort to tee up Goretzka in the second half.

Subotic pays the price

Players could be forgiven for a little rustiness given the circumstances, but it cost Subotic – and Union – dear. The former Dortmund centre-back gave away the penalty that allowed Bayern the lead as he failed to react quickly enough to clear.

What's next?

Bayern return to the Allianz Arena next weekend when they host Eintracht Frankfurt. Union travel to local rivals Hertha for only the second Berlin derby between the clubs in Bundesliga history.

Bayern Munich defender Benjamin Pavard insists he is not afraid by the resumption of the Bundesliga this weekend.

Germany's top flight will be the first of the major European leagues to return behind closed doors since football ground to a halt amid the coronavirus pandemic.

Earlier this month, the German government gave the green light for action to resume and Pavard says that is all the reassurance he needs.

Speaking to L'Equipe, he said: "No, I'm not afraid. 

"At the beginning, when we resumed training, it's not fear but we wondered. But I assume that if the government authorises matches, this means that they believe that the conditions are met.

"If today you ask me if I'm happy to play again, I answer you yes. 

"I'm telling you that but maybe we will have to stop the season. There is no such thing as zero risk. Even if the fans will not be there, it may allow people to think about something else.

"There are fans waiting, there are patients or people who have been affected [for] who [it] can do good. 

"Football is a spectacle. A technical gesture, a goal, it can create an emotion, just for that, I tell myself that we can be useful. We will play for them."

Table-toppers Bayern are in action on Sunday at Union Berlin and Pavard recognises some habits will be hard to shake.

"Celebrating with the players, hugging, we cannot [do this]," he added. 

"I don't know how it's going to happen in a match, maybe spontaneously we'll all come together."

Bayern Munich maintained their 100 per cent record under Hansi Flick and closed the gap on Bundesliga leaders Borussia Monchengladbach to one point with a dominant 4-0 win over Fortuna Dusseldorf.

The champions had suffered a shocking 5-1 defeat in their last away game three weeks ago - a result that brought an end to Niko Kovac's tenure as head coach - but they were on the right side of a thumping victory on this occasion.

Goals from Benjamin Pavard, Corentin Tolisso and Serge Gnabry put the game beyond Dusseldorf inside 34 minutes and ensured a superb first-half performance from Bayern was suitably rewarded.

With three points secured, the Bavarians did not hit the same heights after the interval but Philippe Coutinho added a fourth goal and they have now won each of their three games under interim coach Flick, scoring 10 and conceding none.

The only surprise was Robert Lewandowski's failure to score for the first time this season in the Bundesliga, the striker having managed 16 goals in Bayern's first 11 games.

Flick's men were ahead inside 11 minutes. A short corner from Thomas Muller found Joshua Kimmich all alone and his low cross towards Pavard found its way into the net, with uncertainty over whether the full-back or Dusseldorf's Alfredo Morales had got a touch.

Both Lewandowski and Coutinho went close before a dismal error from Dusseldorf goalkeeper Zack Steffen enabled the visitors to score a second. Under little pressure, Steffen passed the ball straight to Muller and Dusseldorf's scrambling defenders were unable to recover as Gnabry's cross was converted by Tolisso.

The game was effectively ended as a contest when Gnabry scored himself, after the influential Muller had turned Pavard's low cross into his path.

After the hosts' best spell of the game, during which Rouwen Hennings spurned a great opportunity, Lewandowksi diverted an effort wide at the near post and then saw a powerful header tipped away by Steffen.

The Poland forward did claim an assist with 20 minutes remaining, though, as he beat his man on the left of the area and clipped in a cross that narrowly evaded Muller but left Coutinho with a tap-in.

 

What does it mean? Flick making strong case to keep control

Speaking during the international break, Bayern CEO Karl-Heinz Rummenigge confirmed Flick would remain in charge "at least until Christmas and possibly beyond". The response of the club's players to his appointment suggests there is no need to rush the search for a full-time successor to Kovac. Put simply, Bayern look like Bayern once again and Gladbach's 2-0 loss at Union Berlin means they are now right on the leaders’ heels.

Magnificent Muller on song

Having been in and out of Bayern's starting XI under Kovac this season, Muller has started all three games under Flick and was integral to this win. The experienced forward was involved in all four goals, while a glorious first-half flick to Lewandowski summed up his confident display.

Steffen shocker punished

Steffen will not want to see replays of Bayern's second goal. His sloppy pass put Dusseldorf in all sorts of trouble and the visitors were in no mood to pass up such a golden chance.

What's next?

Bayern will look to maintain their momentum under Flick when they face Red Star Belgrade in the Champions League on Tuesday. Their next league game is at home to Bayer Leverkusen next Saturday, the same day Dusseldorf travel to Hoffenheim.

The prolific Robert Lewandowski moved into the Bundesliga record books as he helped Bayern Munich to a 2-1 victory over Union Berlin.

Having matched Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang's record of scoring in the opening eight Bundesliga matches of a season when he found the target against Augsburg, Lewandowski became the first player to net in the first nine games of a campaign when he grabbed Bayern's second seven minutes into the second half.

It was a typically composed finish from Lewandowski, who up until that point had been well shackled by Union either side of Benjamin Pavard's superb strike giving Bayern the lead.

Sebastian Andersson missed a penalty for Union on 58 minutes and, although Sebastian Polter converted a second spot-kick for the visitors late on, Bayern held firm to secure a first win in three league matches and move top of the table.

Pavard lit up what had been an uneventful opening in the 13th minute, slamming home on the half-volley from Rafal Gikiewicz's poor punch.

Hunting his record-setting goal, Lewandowski went close moments later, just failing to connect with Kingsley Coman's acrobatic cut-back.

Coman was the provider for Bayern's next opportunity, playing a neat one-two with Thomas Muller, who drilled his effort straight at Gikiewicz. Union's goalkeeper then kept out Philippe Coutinho's deflected shot before half-time.

Bayern soon had their second, though. After a fine run from full debutant Alphonso Davies, Lewandowski pounced on a loose ball, setting himself before slotting home into the bottom-right corner.

Union were handed a lifeline when referee Marco Fritz utilised VAR to award a penalty for Ivan Perisic's handball, but Manuel Neuer comfortably kept out Andersson's effort. 

After Lewandowski saw a second goal ruled out for offside, Pavard gifted Union a reprieve with a reckless foul on Polter, who made no mistake with a spot-kick that ultimately came too late.

What does it mean? Bayern top of the pile... for now

It is hugely congested at the top of the Bundesliga but, with this win, Niko Kovac's side nosed themselves ahead of the pack.

However, Borussia Monchengladbach and Wolfsburg could both leapfrog the champions should they win their respective matches on Sunday.

Remarkable Robert at it again

It has been an incredible start to the season for Lewandowski and the Poland international has now capped that off by planting himself into the league's record books.

The 31-year-old has 18 goals from 13 appearances in all club competitions so far this season and, with the Bundesliga so tight at the top as it stands, his form could well be what separates Bayern from the rest.

Andersson fluffs his lines

Union's Swedish forward does have three Bundesliga goals to his name this term, though the last one came on September 14 and he displayed a severe lack of confidence when he stepped up to take a spot-kick, ultimately squandering Union's chance to tee up a grandstand finish.

What's next?

Bayern visit Bochum in the DFB-Pokal in midweek, while Union travel to high-fliers Freiburg in the same competition. Eintracht Frankfurt are next up for Bayern in the Bundesliga.

Bayern Munich goalkeeper Manuel Neuer demanded improvement from his team following their 3-2 Champions League win over Olympiacos.

Two goals from in-form striker Robert Lewandowski helped Bayern make it three consecutive wins in Group B but the Bundesliga side had to endure a nervous finish to Tuesday's match.

Neuer was on hand to make two vital late saves and felt the gloss was taken off the win because of a poor defensive display away to Greek side Olympiacos.

Bayern have conceded 10 goals in eight Bundesliga matches and four in three games in the Champions League.

"The problem at the moment is that we need to score three goals every game to win because we keep conceding two," Neuer told UEFA.com.

"We made it difficult for ourselves again and didn't have enough conviction.

"We need to continue working on that, analysing and seeing what we can do better."

Bayern defender Benjamin Pavard felt the team's defence have improved in recent weeks, but acknowledged there was work to be done on the training ground.

Pavard said: "I believe that we made some progress defensively compared to previous matches. 

"The second goal today was bad luck, a deflected shot wrongfooting Manuel. We took these three points and will work harder to concede less goals.

"We knew it would be a tough match here. Olympiacos' fans didn't stop pushing their team until the last minute. We did concede the opener but didn't panic. 

"We played good football and achieved our aim to win the three points. Now we have to prepare for the reverse tie at home, in two weeks. It's an important game; if we win, we will qualify."

Bayern striker Lewandowski showed typical predatory instincts as he took his tally for the season to 18 goals in club football.

The 31-year-old Poland international netted with two close-range finishes and said his relaxed personality has been a key factor during a prolific spell.

"I know that every single situation on the pitch can prove important and can decide if we win or if we lose," added Lewandowski

"That is why I want to stay focused, calm and do my job. For us it was a very important game, not only because we wanted to keep winning in the Champions League but also because of the dropped points in the league. 

"We knew that with three points here, we would be in a great position to win the next match at home as well and make it to the next round. We want to qualify as quickly as possible."

Benjamin Pavard plans to step up and become more important for Bayern Munich in the wake of Niklas Sule's long-term injury.

Bayern were dealt a big blow when Germany international Sule tore the anterior cruciate ligament in his left knee during the 2-2 draw with Augsburg on Saturday.

The centre-back underwent surgery the following day and has been told by Bayern president Uli Hoeness to forget about returning before Euro 2020.

Sule's absence leaves head coach Niko Kovac with key decisions to make for Tuesday's Champions League date with Olympiacos and the remainder of the season.

World Cup winner Pavard and the versatile Joshua Kimmich are the only fit defenders to have started all eight Bundesliga games this season.

Asked if he is the now considered the leader at the back, Pavard told Sport1: "I don't know, I need to talk to the coach first. We'll see, but I've played a lot of games in a row now.

"I hope I can play against Olympiacos again and take more responsibility.

"In any case, I feel good and hope that continues."

Regardless of seniority, the 23-year-old wants his team-mates to begin delivering stronger performances defensively.

Kovac's men have conceded two goals in each of their past four matches in all competitions.

"We are conceding a lot of goals at the moment," Pavard said.

"We urgently need to improve and again allow fewer goals. I hope we keep Olympiacos to zero, that would do us good."

Bayern, 7-2 winners over Tottenham in their last Champions League outing, are top of Group B with six points from two games.

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