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Leverkusen tracking star midfielder Florian Wirtz’s fitness ahead of Europa League final

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LEVERKUSEN, Germany (AP) — Bayer Leverkusen is evaluating attacking midfielder Florian Wirtz’s fitness day by day ahead of three crucial games for the still unbeaten team, including the Europa League final.

Wirtz has been key to Leverkusen’s record 50-game unbeaten run across all competitions this season under coach Xabi Alonso. However, the 21-year-old Wirtz has only started one of the team’s last five games since suffering a blow to the thigh in a 1-1 draw with Borussia Dortmund on April 21.

“I spoke with Florian after training. His feeling was better,” Alonso said Wednesday. “We need to see day by day how he’s feeling, how the pain develops. It’s just a question of pain. There’s no risk of getting a more severe injury.”

Wirtz trained separately from the rest of the Leverkusen squad on Wednesday as the team prepares for its last Bundesliga game of the season against Augsburg on Saturday. Leverkusen has already won the title and is hoping to be the first team ever to finish an entire Bundesliga season unbeaten.

Alonso’s team faces Atalanta in the Europa League final in Dublin next Wednesday before taking on second-division Kaiserslautern in the German Cup final in Berlin three days after that.

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AP soccer: /hub/soccer