Berlin - Arjen Robben is backing his Bayern Munich team-mate Franck Ribery to bounce back from the problematic ankle injury which has kept the France winger out for the last five months.
Ribery, 32, has not played since limping out of Bayern's Champions League win over Shakhtar Donetsk in March and his right ankle injury has so far refused to heal, which has left the Frenchman frustrated.
More so since new signing Brazil international Douglas Costa, 24, shone in Ribery's place on Bayern's left wing and claimed a goal in last Friday's 5-0 win over Hamburg on the opening weekend of the new season.
"It's a really hard time for Franck, but I believe at the end of it, he will come back and that's the point now," said Netherlands star Robben ahead of Saturday's league clash at Hoffenheim.
"He has to be fit and he has to be healthy."
It is hoped Ribery will return to Bayern training in the next fortnight, but Robben says the months of uncertainty he has endured are "the worst" for any player.
"It's better to break a leg, because then you know what you have and that in three or four months time you'll be back again," said Robben, 31, who has been no stranger to injury in his career.
"You want to have clarity, but that's not possible in this case, so it is frustrating for him and that is currently very difficult."