Messi sidelined again because of muscle injury


BARCELONA, Spain (AP) — Barcelona says Lionel Messi will be sidelined because of a muscle injury picked up in the first half against Villarreal in a Spanish league match on Tuesday.

The club says Messi has a left abductor injury but did not give a timeline for his recovery.

Spanish media says Messi is expected to miss the league game at Getafe on Saturday and is doubtful for the Champions League match against Inter Milan on Wednesday.

Messi made his first start of the season against Villarreal following a long layoff because of a right calf injury sustained in the preseason.

Messi played his first minutes of the season when he came off the bench in the second half of a 0-0 draw against Borussia Dortmund in the Champions League last week. He also came off the bench in the second half of the 2-0 loss at Granada in the Spanish league on Sunday.

Messi set up Antoine Griezmann’s opening goal early in the match against Villarreal, then got hurt near the half-hour mark at Camp Nou Stadium. The playmaker left the field and doctors attended to his leg for few minutes before he eventually returned and finished the half. He was replaced by Ousmane Dembele at halftime.


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