Messi certain to be absent for El Clasico

MessiLIONEL Messi is looking increasingly unlikely to be fit enough to face Real Madrid in the first El Clasico of the 2015-16 La Liga campaign, Goal understands.

Barcelona forward Messi suffered a knee ligament injury in the 2-1 win over Las Palmas back in September and with the crunch clash at the Bernabeu taking place on November 21, the Argentine is behind schedule in his bid to face Rafael Benitez’s side.

The Catalan giants initially ruled out Messi for a period of six to eight weeks and with the 28-year-old yet to have returned to training, he is running out of time to reach the required level of fitness to feature in one of the biggest club fixtures in world football.

Former head of medical services at Barcelona Jordi Ardevol told Goal: “He will only be able to be on the pitch if he takes part in some entire training sessions. We need to be careful and if he is not accomplishing the minimum (medical) requests, the best thing to do is not play because he could easily relapse on his injury.”

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