Bayer 04 Leverkusen midfielder Bernd Schneider, capped 81 times by Germany, has returned to training for the first time in nearly nine months after undergoing back surgery.
Schneider last played in his club's 3-0 Bundesliga win against VfB Stuttgart on 13 April, before being diagnosed with a slipped disc in his cervical vertebra (neck). He said: "It would be wrong to go all out right now, but it was a great feeling to be back with the team. The most important thing now is to get back to full fitness." A return to the German national team has also not been ruled out for the 35-year-old with Mannschaft coach Joachim Löw saying: "I still hope that he will come back. First for his club, then for us. He would not deserve to go out like this."
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