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Depay closes on Leo Messi, but Xavi facing a potential crisis as three more Barcelona stars injured in Alaves draw

Depay closes on Leo Messi, but Xavi facing a potential crisis as three more Barcelona stars injured in Alaves draw

 

The personnel crisis facing FC Barcelona has only continued to worsen on Saturday night, owing to developments in the club’s meeting with Deportivo Alaves.

Rioja cancels out Depay

The Blaugrana were of course back in action a short time ago.

On the back of Ronald Koeman’s dismissal earlier this week, the Catalans welcomed the aforementioned Alaves to the Camp Nou, for a La Liga clash.

Barca headed into proceedings in the knowledge that a bounce-back result was very much needed, on the back of successive defeats over the course of the last week.

Upon the final whistle sounding on Saturday night, however, the efforts of the hosts, again, came up short.

After Memphis Depay opened the game’s scoring in spectacular fashion on the back of a sustained spell of pressure early in the 2nd-half, Barcelona finally looked on their way to all three points:

The Dutchman even managed to move into 2nd behind Lionel Messi in an altogether impressive statistical category courtesy of his latest strike:

But the visiting Alaves, evidently, had not read the script.

In turn, just minutes later, Luis Rioja bagged what proved to be a decisive equaliser, dancing through the heart of the Barcelona backline, before rounding Marc-André ter Stegen and slotting home in style.

Pique amongst walking wounded

Barca, as a result, will need to wait until midweek at the earliest to secure a first victory in the post-Koeman era.

As outlined above, though, the eventual result actually proved far from the only concern for a stuttering Blaugrana outfit on Saturday night.

This comes with not one, not two, but three of the club’s stars having been forced to depart the action prematurely, owing to a range of fitness problems.

First came Sergio Aguero, who, amid alarming suggestions of the Argentine struggling to breathe, limped off late in the first-half:

Then came the turn of Gerard Pique, who was helped off after pulling up with what appeared to be a muscular issue.

And a similar ailment soon forced youngster Nico to make way, too, giving rise to understandable questions amongst the Barcelona fanbase regarding what exactly their side have done to be deserving of such a shocking stretch of luck on the personnel front.

Remarkably, amid the chaos in Catalunya this evening, it was revealed that the La Liga heavyweights could now field a near-full XI, made up purely of players either sidelined, unavailable or forced off versus Alaves (the following was unveiled before Nico added ever further to the injury list):

 

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Aminat Aigbe

Aminat Aigbe is the first lady of afronaija and a very good blogger ( Original Mrs AfroNaija )

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