Bayern blow as Martinez suffers sprained ankle

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The versatile Spaniard has suffered an unfortunate fitness setback ahead of a Bundesliga fixture against Mainz, with no date set for a return

Bayern Munich midfielder Javi Martinez is set for a spell on the sidelines with an ankle injury.

The Bundesliga champions have not put a timescale on Martinez's absence, but he will miss Saturday's trip to Mainz as a result.

Bayern have crucial fixtures to come this month, including a home fixture with high-flying Schalke and the first leg of their Champions League last-16 tie with Besiktas.

Martinez has been restored to a defensive-midfield role under Jupp Heynckes this season, having operated chiefly in defence under Pep Guardiola and Carlo Ancelotti, and has made 20 appearances in all competitions.

He has been with Bayern since the summer of 2012.

During his time in Bavaria, the 29-year-old has made 100 Bundesliga appearances and 164 across all competitons.

Martinez will not be adding to that tally any time soon, though, after picking up an untimely knock.

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Bayern will have to tinker with their plans as a result, with Heynckes now needing to shuffle his pack.

Bayern head into their meeting with Mainz sat 16 points clear at the top of the Bundesliga table, with another domestic title very much on the cards.

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