FC Barcelona manager Luis Enrique has declared that Luis Suarez and Thomas Vermaelen are fit to start against Rayo Vallecano at the Camp Nou on Saturday.
Uruguayan International Luis Suarez had earlier been listed as doubtful for the weekend’s clash at the Camp Nou due to muscle discomfort. However, after undergoing a two week physical therapy under the guidance of the Barcelona medical staff, Suarez is fit to start against Rayo Vallecano.
Thomas Vermaelen, who suffered a calf strain against Atletico Madrid a month ago, has fully recovered and is available for selection at the weekend.
However, Argentine sensation Lionel Messi and club captain Andres Iniesta are still out for the Catalans and will not feature on Saturday at the Camp Nou.
Enrique pleased to have Suarez, Neymar in Barcelona during International break
Speaking to the media in his pre-match press conference, Enrique revealed his delight in having Neymar and Suarez in Barcelona during the International break.
“Having them [Suarez and Neymar] not travel is something that suits us, because we need them to be in top form,” said the coach, while explaining that injuries are a headache,” said Enrique.
“The idea is to keep an eye on the number of minutes players play, but it’s no excuse,” added.
This is in stark contrast to Mascherano and Busquets, who have clocked up more than 1000 minutes of non stop football over the past 2 months. “It’s not an ideal situation. Both are key players for us,” explained Enrique.
“I want to find time to give them some rest, but I can’t find that time.”
Asked about Messi’s injury status, Enrique replied, “The key is not to get him back for one game or another. The key is that he recovers well.”
Suarez, Neymar rest will boost Barcelona attack
Both Suarez and Neymar did not travel to South America to take part in CONMEBOL 2018 FIFA World Cup qualifiers on account of their respective bans.
Neymar was serving out the remainder of his 4 match ban that he received while playing for Brazil in the Copa America earlier this summer. Suarez, who notoriously bit Italy’s Giorgio Chiellini at last year’s World Cup, wont be able to play for Uruguay before 2016 after he was given a 9 match ban from International football.
The respective bans received by the two South Americans has turned into a blessing in disguise for Luis Enrique, whose Barcelona side are struggling to cope with the absence of Lionel Messi. After a two week rest, Neymar and Suarez will be hoping to provide the necessary cutting edge to Barcelona’s attack that has been missing since Messi got injured last month.
a FC Barcelona (@FCBarcelona) October 17, 2015