Discomforts and possible woes for Alba, Busquets

Sergio Busquets and Jordi Alba, in action for FC Barcelona.

Following a stalemate at the Camp Nou between Barcelona and Slavia Prague, more bad news came out from the Barcelona camp Tuesday night.

In the fourth round of Champions League group stage action, Barcelona faced Slavia Prague at the Camp Nou. With Barcelona barely coming out of first gear, Slavia Prague proved to be a tough opponent, and the game ended in a stalemate, with both teams having made changes hoping to tilt the game in their favor.

During the game, three substitutions were made: Sergi Roberto for Jordi Alba, Ivan Rakitic for Sergio Busquets, and Ansu Fati for Ousmane Dembélé. While the last substitution was made to give the Guinea-Bissau-born winger a chance to shine, the two former substitutions were due to discomforts.

As the Catalan side confirmed in an official statement during half-time, Jordi Alba was substituted due to muscular discomforts. According to multiple journalists in the press box, the player himself asked for a substitution around half-time. The club then confirmed that this was due to a discomfort in his hamstring.

He will undergo tests to determine the extent of the discomfort and whether it will see him sidelined, or whether he will be fit to feature in Barca’s upcoming home game against Celta Vigo this coming Saturday.

After the match, the 31-year-old midfielder acknowledged his discomforts. Speaking to Radio Catalunya in the mixed zone, Busquets said that he finished the game “like this”, referring to his still visible discomforts. The discomforts caused Busquets to be light-headed at half time, hence the substitution, as confirmed by manager Ernesto Valverde, reports news outlet RAC1.

Jordi Alba has recently returned from a hamstring injury that kept him sidelined for four games, and the hamstring discomfort during his latest appearance was a relapse, as confirmed by the club. Due to this, it is likely that the club will sideline him for at least the coming game against Celta to avoid further injuries in the squad.

Sergio Busquets, on the other hand, has not had an injury since June of last year, and his injury-free form contributed to him being the fifth-most fielded player last season, with a total of 2,037 minutes. This season, he’s eighth on that list.

Barcelona’s game against Celta should see the ball rolling at the Camp Nou at 9:00 P.M. local time, this coming Saturday.