In a much-awaited answer for Barcelona fans, the club announced on Sunday that Lionel Messi will be fit to play in Barcelona’s first game back against Real Mallorca.
When asked whether Messi would be able to play next weekend, coach Quique Setien told, “Messi is not the only one that has not trained and felt some discomfort. It’s what has happened to everyone or practically everyone since they have been back. It is some minor tightness and we have it under control. He is doing perfectly and will not have any problem.”
Messi trained alone on Saturday at Camp Nou after sitting out the team’s previous two sessions, raising doubts over his involvement in the trip to Mallorca on Saturday.
Barcelona said on Friday that Messi should return to full training “in a few days’ time”, but his absence is a concern given the squad have only 10 days to train together before La Liga resumes on Thursday.
La Liga will resume with Sevilla against Real Betis after a three-month break due to the coronavirus pandemic. There are 11 rounds left to play, with fixtures expected to take place every day until the season ends on July 19.
Messi was out for six weeks between August and September with a calf injury and then at the end of September, he missed another week with a problem in his left thigh.
After regaining fitness, he quickly found form, scoring 24 goals in 31 appearances to help Barcelona sit two points clear at the top of La Liga.
While Messi’s fitness is a focus for Barcelona, the club will also be boosted by the return of Luis Suarez after the Uruguayan star’s extended injury absence.
The club confirmed over the weekend that Suarez will be fit to take part in next weekend’s clash with Mallorca, as he’ll return to the Barca squad for the first time since January.
Suarez has been out of action for the last five months after undergoing surgery for a knee injury that had been expected to end his season.
“He is better than we expected,” Setien said. “But the question is how ready he is after so long out and whether he is ready to start.”
Messi has trained separately after Barca confirmed their captain suffered a quadriceps injury ahead of La Liga’s resumption on June 11 following a delay due to the coronavirus pandemic.
League-leaders Barca currently sits two points clear of bitter rivals Real Madrid with 11 matches remaining and will restart their 2019-20 campaign against Real Mallorca on June 13.
After that, they’ll face a short turnaround before a match against Leganes three days later before a slight break ahead of a match against Sevilla on June 21.