Bayern Munich injury crisis leaves Dante as only available centre-back
Dante will be Bayern Munich's only recognised centre-back when they host Bayer Leverkusen next weekend.
Jerome Boateng will be suspended after he picked up two yellow cards in their 2-1 victory at Hoffenheim on Saturday, while Medhi Benatia suffered a hamstring injury that, according to kicker, is likely to rule him out until after the international break in early September.
With Javi Martinez and Holger Badstuber also currently sidelined with injury, that leaves Dante as the only senior centre-back available to coach Pep Guardiola.
The Brazilian, 31, has fallen down the pecking order after struggling for form since the 2014 World Cup and has been linked with a move away from the club.
THE BEST OF ESPN FC
- Bell: Liverpool fans make themselves heard
- Cox: Leicester improving | Why Poch should stay
- Okwonga: Man United's market | City's title hopes
- Laurens: PSG's pre-UCL issues | Hertha's curse
- Highlights (U.S. only): Stuttgart 1-3 BVB
- FC TV: Champions League W2W4 | LVG wrong
- News | Transfer | Toe Poke | Fantasy | FC TV | Podcast | MLS
Dante did not make it off the bench against Hoffenheim, and Guardiola -- who had already made his three substitutions when Boateng was dismissed -- was forced to field Xabi Alonso in a three-man defence alongside full-backs Rafinha and David Alaba.
Bayern sporting executive Matthias Sammer said he was satisfied that the Bundesliga champions have enough options at the back.
"We have Dante, we Rafa [Rafinha], we have Alaba -- we have a big squad," Sammer said in local newspaper TZ, which also reported that Dante excelled during Sunday's training session.