Koeman on Messi’s fitness ahead of Supercopa final: “We’re hopeful he can play in the game”

Barcelona news has been dominated in recent days by Lionel Messi‘s fitness.

The Argentine picked up a thigh injury at Granada last weekend and missed the Blaugrana’s Supercopa de Espana semi-final against Real Sociedad.

It’s touch and go whether Messi will be fit in time to face Athletic Bilbao in the final at Seville’s La Cartuja, but the good news for Barcelona fans is that their captain trained this evening.

Lionel Messi

Messi trained by himself yesterday but participated fully today, giving hope that he’ll be able to start tomorrow evening.

Ronald Koeman made it clear in his press conference pre-game that it will be Messi, who knows his body better than anybody else, that makes the call.

“Leo trained individually yesterday,” Koeman said in comments carried by Diario Sport.

“He’ll train [with the team] at six today and we’ll see [how it goes]. The player always has the last word because he knows his body.

“We will wait until tomorrow morning because he knows his body and will be able to see how he’s doing after training today. We’re hopeful he can play in the game.

Ronald Koeman

“If Messi isn’t there, something’s missing. With Leo, the team is stronger. His creativity and effectiveness are missing [if he’s not there]. But we’ll try to play our game whether or not Leo is there.”

The Supercopa is normally the least significant of the titles available to Barcelona but this season has taken on a whole new significance.

Winning the first trophy of the Koeman era could provide Barcelona, at a low ebb at the moment, a much-needed shot in the arm.

Tags Barcelona La Liga Lionel Messi Ronald Koeman