Munich - Philipp Lahm might not return from an ankle fracture until March, the Bayern Munich captain said in an interview published Wednesday.
Lahm, 31, told Germany's Bild paper that he will not rush back to action in the wake of the injury sustained in mid-November in training, but aims to be fit again for the deciding stages of the season.
Lahm said he will "definitely not return" in January, "maybe in February, but maybe not until March.
"I will be 100 per cent fit when it matters towards the end of the season. The most important thing is how the bone heals, whether the screws cause problems. I know from experience that an early comeback makes no sense."
Lahm said he has "no time pressure" after his summer retirement from the national team.
Munich top the Bundesliga seven points ahead of Wolfsburg with four rounds left until the winter break which runs until the end of January.
But he warned that a third straight league title is no foregone conclusion although Munich should be hard to beat.
"The title is not decided yet," he said. "But if we continue playing like this there can and will be only one champion: Bayern! This consistency, the tactical variety - we have never been as strong, and we have never had such a good feeling."