Messi & Suarez fit for Barca run-in

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Luis Suarez and Lionel Messi are set to feature for Barcelona as the La Liga leaders return to action at Mallorca.

The league’s coronavirus suspension has given Suarez, 33, time to recover after the Uruguayan striker underwent surgery on his right knee in January.

Top scorer Messi had a thigh problem but the Argentine forward, 32, returned to training this week as Barca prepare for their first game in 97 days.

“He’s doing perfectly and will not have any problem,” said coach Quique Setien.

 

On Suarez, he added: “He is better than we expected. But the question is how ready he is after so long out and whether he is ready to start.”

Samuel Umtiti is also fit again but fellow French defender Clement Lenglet is suspended so Uruguayan Ronald Araujo, 21, could make just his second Barca appearance.

Real Madrid replaced Barca at the top of the table when they beat the defending champions 2-0 at the Bernabeu on 1 March.

 

But Barca regained top spot on 7 March as Messi’s late penalty – his 19th league goal of the season – gave them a 1-0 home win over Real Sociedad, and Real lost 2-1 at Real Betis the next day to surrender the initiative in the title race.

 

Barca are two points clear with 11 rounds left in La Liga, which resumed with Sevilla’s derby win over Betis on Thursday.

Hosts Mallorca are third-bottom after winning 2-1 at fellow strugglers Eibar in their last game before the enforced break.

 

BBC

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