Barcelona know that if they can see their way through the second leg of their semi-final against Real Madrid in the Copa del Rey, they will be heavy favourites for a domestic treble this year. They are sweating on the fitness of a number of players for the mot important game remaining on their calendar though.
MD say that Pedri and Andreas Christensen have already been discarded from next Thursday’s El Clasico. The former relapsed in his recovery before the international break, while the Danish international picked up a muscle problem against Finland.
They also say that Ousmane Dembele is a serious doubt for the game, as his recovery continues at a slow pace. He is unlikely to play, but there is a little more hope with Frenkie de Jong, although they do call it a miracle Barcelona are hoping for. The Dutchman has a muscle twinge sustained against Real Madrid in La Liga, which has kept him out of the Netherlands squad.
Despite Memphis Depay questioning the seriousness of the injury, de Jong travelled to the Netherlands to be assessed by their medical staff, at which point it was confirmed he was not fit to play.
The fact their report did not mention Ronald Araujo could be seen as a positive, a sign that his injury strain is not as serious. If Barcelona are without de Jong, it will likely mean a start for Franck Kessie, who came off the bench in the last El Clasico.
Image via Alex Caparros/Getty Images