Messi fit to face Alaves - Enrique | Nigeria News Today. Your online Nigerian Newspaper


Lionel Messi is fit to face Alaves on Saturday if selected by Luis Enrique, the Barcelona coach has confirmed.

Messi, 29, returned early from international duty this week with a groin injury, missing Argentina's draw with Venezuela to focus on his recovery back in Barcelona.

He was able to return to light training on Wednesday, but only completed his first full session on Friday.

However, Barca boss Luis Enrique has said that Messi is available for this weekend's game at Camp Nou.

"He is in condition to be able to play [against Alaves]," Luis Enrique confirmed in his prematch news conference.

"I've spoken with him like I speak with all my players and we know how he is."

Despite injuring his groin in Barca's win against Athletic Bilbao two weeks ago, Messi still joined up with Argentina, scoring the winning goal in their World Cup qualification victory over Uruguay.

Therefore, there may be some reservations about rushing him back into action with Celtic to follow in the Blaugrana's first Champions League game of the season on Tuesday.

Luis Enrique added: "We have to analyse the situation and keep in mind what's best for the player and make sure he's in the best condition possible.

"There was a report which said what the player has and we have had to evaluate things from there.

"We have a lot of commitments throughout the season and we always focus on [the best] for the player."

There are also decisions to be made over Neymar and Luis Suarez before the return of La Liga this weekend.

Suarez trained for the first time this week on Friday after returning from Uruguay duty, while Neymar arrived back in Barcelona on Wednesday after over 100 days away.

Luis Enrique acknowledged that Neymar "is keen to take part" against Alaves, but warned that he won't be afraid to rotate any of his players this season.

"Every week there are going to be incredible players on the bench or in the stands," he said.

"I'm not a wizard, I can't make all the players happy. There's not one player happy with the minutes they play, but they know I'm not a wizard.

"They all have the same objective, though, which is to win titles, which is why we've signed these players.

"We always have to look for the benefit of the team."

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