Neymar will miss the la liga opener against Elche on Sunday due to a sprained ankle, reports Barcelona’s official website

Spanish giants Barcelona suffered a huge blow just at the beginning of the new season after their star performer Neymar was ruled out of their opening La liga encounter against Elche. The charismatic Brazilian complained of pain in his left ankle and the club’s official website confirmed the news of him having a grade 1 ankle sprain.

Barcelona released a statement about the player’s fitness status which stated “Following the Thursday training session Neymar Jr. complained about some pain in his left ankle, and tests have confirmed that the player has a Grade 1 ankle sprain. The Club’s medical team has indicated that his return to training will depend on how the injury treatment evolves.”

Neymar has had his fair share with injuries in the recent past. The Brazilian striker was forced out of the World Cup due to a devastating injury where he suffered a broken vertebrae. His absence cost the Brazilian team in the most excruciating way, as the hosts were humiliated by Germany in the Semi final encounter by 7-1.

With Neymar’s ankle injury, the Spanish giants will have to deal with some serious fitness issues at Camp Nou. Barcelona’s new signings  Marc-Andre ter Stegen and Thomas Vermaelen are sidelined due to fitness woes and as Luis Suarez is following his 4 months ban for biting  Italian defender Giorgio Chiellini during the World Cup, Barcelona’s new coach Luis Enrique will have his work cut out to get the team spirit high at the beginning of new season.

Barcelona will enter this season without their veterans Carlos Puyol and Victor Valdes, who were pillars of strength for the club and it will be very difficult to fill the void which is left after their departure.

The club has made many big signing in the transfer season, thogh Luis Suarez will not be able to play for sometime, Ivan Rakitic and Claudio Bravo are expected to play their debut match for the club on sunday.

This  will also be the 1st competitive game for new coach Luis Enrique, who now has the responsibility of changing the club’s fortune in the coming season. Barcelona’s last season was nothing short of a disaster and the former Barcelona captain will want his team to start the new season with a win.