Messi will sit out Athletic Copa clash & could miss Malaga as well

Lionel Messi will not play in the Copa del Rey first leg against Athletic Club at San Mames and is a doubt for the league game against Malaga. That’s what the medical tests on Monday have determined at the Creu Blanca Clinic. 

The Barcelona forward was accompanied to the clinic by Pepe Costa and Ricard Pruna after he was taken off as a precaution in the La Liga win over Athletic on Sunday. And it’s now been suggested that, as a precaution, he spends a few days out and - at very least - misses the second game against Athletic this week. 

Messi has a slight discomfort in his right hamstring, something which Luis Enrique revealed on Sunday night. The club have since released a statement explaining that any serious muscle injury has been discarded and that it’s simply a matter of a minor knock. 

However, they don’t want to take risks with the Argentine, which was behind the reason to take him off at half time on Sunday, with Arda Turan coming on in his place. No risks will be taken on Wednesday, then, with Messi resting as a form of precaution. 

Luis Suarez will also be missing due to suspension, meaning Neymar will be the main attacking threat in the side. Luis Enrique must look for solutions for how to fill the front line, with Arda Turan and Aleix Vidal both among the options. 

Messi is also a doubt for the league game at Malaga this weekend. It will be seen, though, how he feels later this week before a decision is made. 

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