Samuel Umtiti fighting for his Barcelona career

Samuel Umtiti knows he must retain his fitness to retain his place at Barcelona, according to a report in Diario AS.

The France international has been struggling with a persistent knee injury for the past year, with the club alternating between treatments in order to solve the issue.

After the issued was flagged up by club doctors back in November 2018, he underwent a period of rehabilitation in Qatar, before undergoing minor surgery back in Spain.

The Blaugrana are said to have been more persistent for the defender to get full surgery on the issue, while the player instead opted to go for more conservative treatments.

The report adds there has been a small degree of friction between the parties with the club believing that if the central defender had followed their instructions, he would have been fit for the end of the season and crucial cup matches.

Umtiti made his first start of the season in Saturday’s 3-0 win at Eibar and the report outlines how he has only featured in 19 matches for the Catalan giants since helping France to the World Cup in 2018.

Prior to that, he had grown into a defensive star at the Camp Nou by making 83 first-team appearances across the previous two campaigns.

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