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Barca defender faces long spell on the sidelines

Barcelona handed serious injury blow ahead of El Clásico and UCL tie

October 17, 2018 By Oscar Rojas
Ernesto Valverde will have to rely on only two center backs for the next three weeks, which include the match against Real Madrid.

Barcelona's return to La Liga after the international break did not bring good news, as one of their key players will not be available to play for a while.

Following a number of tests performed on his left knee, French defender Samuel Umtiti will remain on the sidelines for at least three weeks, meaning that he will miss the crucial clashes against Sevilla on Sunday and against Real Madrid in the upcoming Spanish Clásico.

Umtiti's refusal to follow the advice of Barcelona's medical staff could extend the amount of time he will spend on the sidelines, with the possibility of requiring surgery to correct the problem.

Added to the domestic games he will miss due to this injury, Umtiti will also be left out of the UEFA Champions League match against Inter Milan.

The French center back's absence represents quite a problem for coach Ernesto Valverde, as he will have to face this tough moment of the season with only two center backs available: Gerard Piqué and Clement Lenglet. Belgian defender Thomas Vermaelen is also out after picking up a muscular injury during the international break.

With that in mind, Barcelona's boss will need to adjust his lineups to make the most out of their upcoming games. Their first test to try and end their four-game streak without a win in La Liga will take place on Saturday, as they host Sevilla in a crucial match to decide who ends the weekend as the leader in the Spanish top flight.

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