Messi leaves Barca game with elbow injury

Virginia Santiago
October 24, 2018

He was only on the pitch for 26 minutes before being subbed out with an injury and was replaced by Ousmane Dembele. The costly victory lifted Barcelona past Sevilla and to the top of the standings.

Sevilla came close to levelling four minutes later when Guilherme Arana struck one towards the bottom corner, but his effort smashed against the post as Barcelona survived a risky moment.

When Barca went three matches without a win, he was dropped. We have a good team.

To acquire Dembele from Borussia Dortmund in 2017, Barcelona agreed to a transfer deal that could reach 147 million euros ($169 million).

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Despite the injury to Messi, Barcelona extended their lead in the second half through a Luis Suarez penalty.

"I don´t really give any thought to "Messidepenencia", Valverde said.

It is a lesson to learn for Machin that the side need cement in the middle of the park.

"We have to prepare ourselves, it is clear we are going to notice the loss of Messi but we have players that can cover". He is very talented.

Coutinho arrived from Liverpool in January for 160 million euros ($184 million) as part of the rebuild following Neymar's departure. Samuel Eto'o, Ronaldinho and Andres Iniesta were the most advanced players for Barcelona, whilst Thierry Henry was an unused substitute.

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Indeed, Messi isolated Sevilla centre-back Sergi Gomez in a risky position before shifting the ball to one side and finding the bottom corner with an excellent strike.

Undoubtedly the biggest game Messi will miss is El Clasico next Sunday.

However, Barcelona defender Gerard Pique is optimistic that the Spanish champions and league toppers can cope without their star man, though psychologically there is a chance of them being slightly impacted by his absence.

For a team that prides itself on flair and flamboyance, it is a streak that reflects just as badly on Lopetegui as the results, which left Real Madrid four points adrift of Barcelona.

Also, Real Madrid lost again while suffering its worst scoring drought.

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They face Viktoria Plzen on Tuesday before visiting Barcelona next Saturday and a defeat by their greatest rivals might well see Lopetegui axed by club president Florentino Perez.

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