Bayern Munich return to training for first time since coronavirus suspension - in pictures

George Flood

Bayern Munich trained for the first time on Monday since the coronavirus pandemic brought German football to a halt.

With the German Football League (DFL) previously stipulating that clubs should not train again before April 5, the reigning Bundesliga champions tentatively returned to their Sabener Strasse facility earlier this afternoon.

However, Hansi Flick's side did not train as a large mass, but instead went through a warm-up, running and shooting drills and technical exercises in small groups so they could adhere to social distancing rules.

"In line with government policy and the relevant authorities, all hygiene measures were strictly observed in order to slow the spread of coronavirus," Bayern said on their official website.

Captain and goalkeeper Manuel Neuer said: "It was certainly a very unusual feeling holding a training session in small groups today, but it was also nice to see the boys in person again."

"I'd like to thank the club and all the helpers who have made it possible for us to complete football-specific training on the pitch again during these difficult times."

The top two divisions of German football were initially suspended until at least April 2 on March 13, with plans to play a weekend of fixtures behind closed doors before the postponement began changed.

That suspension was later extended through to April 30, with the DFL still hoping to conclude the 2019-20 campaign by June 30.

Borussia Dortmund, Bayern Munich, RB Leipzig and Bayer Leverkusen have all joined together to create a €20million (£17.5m) solidarity fund to help clubs in financial trouble as a result of the shutdown.

Bayern - who handed a new long-term contract to head coach Flick on Friday - held a four-point advantage over nearest rivals Dortmund at the Bundesliga summit at the time of the suspension.

They had also advanced to the semi-finals of the German Cup and led Chelsea 3-0 in their Champions League last-16 tie, with the return leg still to come in Bavaria.

Scroll through the gallery above to see pictures of Bayern back in training...

Read more

The Open 2020 CANCELLED due to coronavirus pandemic, R&A confirm

Man City manager Guardiola's mother dies after contracting covid-19

Should Premier League players accept wage cuts? Have your say