Lionel Messi a Doubt for La Liga Opener After Suffering Injury in Return to Barcelona Training

Barcelona forward Lionel Messi has sustained a calf injury in his first training session back from his summer holidays, forcing him to miss out on the club’s forthcoming pre-season tour of the USA. 

Messi had been granted an extra period of rest following his exploits with Argentina at the Copa America over the summer, returning to the squad for Sunday’s pre-season friendly with Arsenal, though he remained an unused substitute. 

However, it has now been revealed that just after the Argentine made his return to first-team training on Monday morning, he suffered a grade one calf strain, which is now set to rule him out of Barcelona’s upcoming tour of the United States, where they will play Napoli twice.

In an official statement, the club explained: “First team player Leo Messi, who had returned from his summer break for training on Monday, withdrew from the session due to discomfort in his right leg. Tests carried out have diagnosed a Grade 1 calf strain for the Argentine.

“Messi will remain in Barcelona and will now not travel to the USA for the club’s tour.”

As of yet, it is unknown how long the 32-year-old will be out for, with their title defence in La Liga set to begin on Friday 16 August against Athletic Bilbao. 

Barça explained as much when they finished the statement by admitting: “His availability to come back to action will be dictated by his recovery from the injury.”

Though Messi did not play against the Gunners, he was on the pitch to offer the traditional pre-season speech upon the unveiling of the 2019/20 squad.

In that speech, Messi said: “I am confident that this squad will battle again in all competitions. This club always fights for everything and this year will be no different. I hope you all return with renewed hopes and desire.”


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