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Boateng plans September comeback

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(FILES) This file photo taken on July 02, 2016 shows Germany's defender Jerome Boateng spot-kicking a goal during a penalty shoot-out in the Euro 2016 quarter-final football match between Germany and Italy at the Matmut Atlantique stadium in Bordeaux. Jerome Boateng's way into the world top was long and rocky. Now the central defender from Bayern Munich was voted Germany's Footballer of the Year. VINCENZO PINTO / AFP

(FILES) This file photo taken on July 02, 2016 shows Germany’s defender Jerome Boateng spot-kicking a goal during a penalty shoot-out in the Euro 2016 quarter-final football match between Germany and Italy at the Matmut Atlantique stadium in Bordeaux. Jerome Boateng’s way into the world top was long and rocky. Now the central defender from Bayern Munich was voted Germany’s Footballer of the Year.<br />VINCENZO PINTO / AFP

Germany’s newly-nominated player of the year Jerome Boateng says he plans to return from injury after September’s international break.

Boateng, 27, has been injured since tearing his right thigh when Germany lost to France in the semi-finals of Euro 2016 last month, but is targeting a return for Bayern Munich at Schalke on September 9 in his club’s second league game of the season.

Boateng will miss Germany’s friendly at home to Finland on August 31 and opening World Cup 2018 qualifier away to Norway on September 4.

“I don’t want to give a definite date, but it’s heading in that direction”, Boateng told German magazine Kicker, having returned to running with Bayern last week.

“At the moment things are going well, I am happy and I don’t feel anything. I can run just fine, but not at a high tempo as I need to take care.”

Boateng sits out Bayern’s match at Borussia Dortmund on Sunday for the German Super Cup, plus their German Cup first-round match against Carl-Zeiss Jena on August 19 and first Bundesliga game of the season at home to Werder Bremen on August 26.

Boateng was voted German footballer of the year for 2015/16 by Germany’s sports journalists, magazine Kicker announced Sunday.

He beat off competition from his Bayern team-mates Thomas Mueller, who finished second in the voting, and Robert Lewandowski, who came third.

It is the first time a defender has won the award since 1997.

Boateng won the league and cup double with Bayern last season, but an injury in January restricted him to only 19 Bundesliga appearances last season, making his selection a surprise.

“Of course, I am incredibly proud to have been able to achieve such an award,” said Boateng.


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