Rafinha to return after 9 months out

Barcelona midfielder Rafinha Alcantara has returned to first-team training after being sidelined for almost nine months after a knee injury.

The Brazilian damaged his knee ligaments in last season’s 4-1 victory at Granada in early April and has not featured for the Catalan giants since.

“Rafinha receives medical clearance,” read a Barcelona statement.

“After an arthroscopic procedure to fix the injury to his internal meniscus, the Brazilian midfielder has been working hard in order to be able to return to action.”

Rafinha had long been rumoured to make a return at the start of the current campaign but a series of setbacks with his injury has continually delayed his return.

Having scored seven goals in 28 appearances last season, the brother of Bayern Munich midfielder Thiago had been linked with a move to Juventus over the summer.

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