FC Barcelona club captain Andres Iniesta has been selected by manager Luis Enrique in his squad to face Getafe on Saturday.
Iniesta has been out of action for the past one month after injuring his thigh muscle during Barcelona’s Champions League home clash against Bayer Leverkusen.
La Masia graduate Sergi Roberto, who suffered a similar injury to Iniesta 10 days ago against BATE Borisov, has also been included by Enrique in his squad.
However, Argentine midfielder Javier Mascherano will miss this weekend’s clash against Getafe after he was handed a 2-match ban by the Spanish Football Federation for allegedly abusing the assistant referee in last week’s league match against Eibar.
Enrique delighted to have Iniesta back
Speaking to the media ahead of his side’s clash against Getafe, Enrique expressed his delight in welcoming back club captain Andres Iniesta from injury.
“If [Iniesta and Sergi Roberto] go, they could start the game,” said Luis Enrique.
“Another thing is if they will be at 100 percent. They are lacking match fitness.”
Asked about Messi’s potential return from injury before next month’s El Clasico, Enrique replied, “We are thinking about Messi recovering completely, not worrying about any particular date.
“What we want is for him to recover 100 percent.”
“We are not worse than last year physically,” the Asturian added. “But we are aware that we are pushing some of the players more than we want. I hope we do not pay for that at the end of the season.”
a FC Barcelona (@FCBarcelona) October 30, 2015
Iniesta’s return from injury a timely boost for Luis Enrique
After losing Lionel Messi, Rafinha, Andres Iniesta and Sergi Roberto to injury in the span of a month, Luis Enrique’s midfield woes were compounded by the 2-match ban handed down to Javier Mascherano after last week’s altercation with the assistant referee.
In this light, Andres Iniesta’s return from injury after a one-month lay off comes as a timely boost for the Barcelona manager. Iniesta’s calm demeanor, intelligent passing and intricate link up play in midfield gives Barcelona an additional cutting edge in attack. Iniesta’s presence in the Barcelona starting lineup through the course of the season will be pivotal to the club’s title ambitions.