Text size:

  • Small
  • Normal
  • Large
Lionel Messi had to leave Barcelona's 4-1 win over Real Betis on Sunday after injuring his left hamstring. Julio Munoz / EPA
Lionel Messi had to leave Barcelona's 4-1 win over Real Betis on Sunday after injuring his left hamstring. Julio Munoz / EPA

Messi out for two months for Barca

Hamstring blow means Argentine will miss internationals and possibly the remainder of Barcelona's 2013 fixtures.

BARCELONA // Argentine star Lionel Messi will be sidelined for about six to eight weeks due to a muscle tear in his left hamstring muscle, the Spanish giants said yesterday.

The 26-year-old limped off after just 20 minutes of Barcelona’s 4-1 victory away to Real Betis on Sunday and was replaced by Andres Iniesta.

It was the third time this season that he has been forced off with a muscular problem following hamstring and thigh injuries in his right leg.

“The club’s medical services confirmed after tests this Monday morning that Leo Messi has a torn hamstring muscle in his left thigh and is expected to miss the next 6 to 8 weeks,” Barcelona said in a statement.

“The first phase of Messi’s recovery will be covered in Barcelona and he will then travel to Buenos Aires,” it added.

After Sunday’s match, Barcelona boss Gerardo Martino said Messi’s injury troubles were not related and the absence of the four-time World Player of the Year could not be used as an excuse for the team to not perform.

“We have the best player in the world, but we also have four or five of the next six or seven best players in the world,” he said. “Therefore, as a coach, the absence of Messi should never be used as an excuse for not winning.

“The injury to Messi doesn’t have anything to do with the previous ones because it is in the other leg.

“We also need to speak with Leo. It is the third episode he has had in a short time, so it is obviously playing on his mind.”

Messi suffered a bruised thigh during the first leg of the Spanish Super Cup against Atletico Madrid which kept him out for a week.

He then suffered a small muscle tear in his right thigh during a Primera Liga match against Almeria on September 28 which sidelined him for three weeks.

Last week, Messi said on Chinese social networking site Weibo at the weekend that he was still not fully fit.

“Physically I am still not at 100 per cent, but I am confident that as I play more matches I will recover my rhythm,” he said.

Despite losing Messi with the score still 0-0, Barcelona cruised to victory as two goals in two minutes from Neymar and Pedro Rodriguez put them 2-0 up at the break and Cesc Fabregas struck twice after the interval.

The win left Barcelona with 37 points from 13 matches, three points ahead of second-placed Atletico Madrid and six ahead of arch-rivals Real Madrid.

Fabregas said he understood Messi’s frustration, but that it was possibly best for his teammate to sit out a couple of weeks to recover his best form.

“Messi needs to be explosive to stand out and he needs to stop for as long as it requires to be OK,” the midfielder said after Sunday’s match. The same thing has happened to me in the past and it is very frustrating.”

Fabregas also limped off after appearing to injure his knee whilst scoring his second of the night.

The club said yesterday he has a sprained knee ligament and will need roughly one week to recover.

Back to the top

More articles

Editor's Picks

 Shah Rukh Khan performs at the IPL Gala dinner to open IPL VII at the Emirates Palace hotel in Abu Dhabi.

In pictures: Shah Rukh Khan stars at IPL Gala dinner in Abu Dhabi

The superstar entertainer Shah Rukh Khan on stage last night at a gala dinner to launch the Indian Premier League cricket tournament.

No words can describe this April 17, your captions will

Have a catchy caption for this picture. Share it with us and we might publish it and reward you.

 When this 1856 British Guiana One-Cent Magenta stamp goes under the hammer at Sotheby’s in New York on June 17, it is expected to attract a world record bid for a single stamp of up to $20 million (Dh73.4m). Courtesy Sotheby’s

Rare 1856 stamp up for auction at Sotheby’s

This is one of the world’s rarest stamps and when it goes up for auction in June it should fetch $20million. Its history since it was issued in 1856 is fascinating – and includes one murderous chapter, as Jonathan Gornall reports

 This Dh17,000 Miele system can prepare your choice of coffee - from capuccino to espresso - at a touch of a button. Pawan Singh / The National

In pictures: Miele puts art in coffee making

Miele has devoted itself to the art of preparing the black liquid with its beautifully designed coffee machines, living up to its mantra of turning kitchens into cafés.

 Iranian President Hassan Rouhani greets supporters after his arrival in Zahedan, the regional capital of Sistan and Baluchestan province on Tuesday, April 15, 2014. During Mr Rouhani's two-day visit, he will tour several other cities and hold meetings with local scholars and entrepreneurs. Maryam Rahmanian for The National

On the road with Hassan Rouhani

Iran's president is touring some of Iran's most underdeveloped provinces. Foreign correspondent Yeganeh Salehi is traveling with him.

 Amir Khan, during a workout at the Gloves Community Centre on March 24, 2014 in Bolton, England, says his fight will be the real main event in Las Vegas on May 3. Alex Livesey/Getty Images

Amir Khan says bout with Luis Collazo ‘will steal the show’ in Las Vegas on May 3

British-Pakistani boxer Amir Khan says his fight with Luis Collazo will be the main attraction on same fight card led by Floyd Mayweather Jr and Marcos Maidana, writes Omar Al Raisi.


To add your event to The National listings, click here

Get the most from The National