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Lionel Messi will play no part in Barcelona’s meeting with Eibar this weekend, it has been confirmed.
‘Enjoy a rest’
Ronald Koeman’s men are of course set to round out their campaign tomorrow evening.
The Blaugrana, until recently in the thick of the La Liga title race, now have little more than pride to play for in the final round of Spanish top-flight fixtures.
A stretch of just one win from their last 5 has seen Barca slip a full seven points adrift of table-topping Atletico Madrid, who will vie it out with city rivals Real for supremacy on Saturday.
MADRID, SPAIN – MAY 16: Luis Suarez of Atletico Madrid celebrates 2-1 during the La Liga Santander match between Atletico Madrid v Osasuna at the Estadio Wanda Metropolitano on May 16, 2021 in Madrid Spain (Photo by David S. Bustamante/Soccrates/Getty Images)
In turn, an aptly underwhelming end to an altogether sub-par campaign lies in store for Koeman and co. at the Ipurua Municipal Stadium in 24 hours’ time.
And, as outlined above, the latest team news released on Friday evening is only likely to result in even fewer of the Blaugrana faithful opting to tune in.
This comes with talisman Lionel Messi set to play no part versus Eibar.
As per an official Barcelona statement released a short time ago:
‘The Argentine Leo Messi has not trained on Friday with the coach’s permission and he will not be in the squad for the game against Eibar on Saturday.’
‘The striker can enjoy a rest before next month’s Copa America after a season in which he is one of the players in the squad who has played most.’
— FC Barcelona (@FCBarcelona) May 21, 2021
Boost for CR7
Messi’s impending absence, whilst obviously disappointing for supporters of the Catalans, will also come as a blow to the Argentine’s loyal individual fanbase.
This comes with Messi embroiled in his latest tight goalscoring race with long-time rival Cristiano Ronaldo .
As things stand, Barca’s star man sits a goal clear of Ronaldo in the European goalscoring charts, having found the net on 30 occasions in La Liga this season.
Whilst Messi watches on from home on Saturday, though, CR7 looks set to play a central role, as Juventus prepare to face Bologna in an absolutely pivotal fixture in the Serie A top-4 race.
A brace on the part of the Portuguese, in turn, would see Ronaldo finish out the campaign a goal clear of his historic rival – albeit with both some way adrift of Golden Shoe winner-in-waiting Robert Lewandowski.
Messi, Ronaldo and Lewandowski were all in the goals over the weekend 🔥
But who’s ahead of who in the race for the Golden Shoe? 🥇pic.twitter.com/B9YTBfahbx
— Goal Asia (@Goal_Asia_) May 18, 2021