Barcelona superstar Lionel Messi has been battling a hamstring injury for the past two weeks after suffering the injury in the first leg of Barca's UEFA Champions League quarterfinal win over Paris Saint-Germain.
UPDATE: Saturday, April 13, at 9:00 a.m. ET by Patrick Clarke
Lionel Messi's hamstring injury will keep him sidelined for Sunday's La Liga clash against Real Zaragoza according to Football Espana.
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UPDATE: Wednesday, April 3, at 8:33 a.m. ET by Brandon Galvin
Disappointing news for Barcelona fans as Lionel Messi (hamstring) will miss at least one game of action, according to Football Espana's Staff.
Lionel Messi has been ruled out of Barcelona’s next game for certain, after picking up an injury against Paris Saint-Germain.
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ESPN FC first reported the news:
Lionel Messi will not come out for the second half after suffering a hamstring injury: bit.ly/Xbrfac— ESPN FC (@ESPNFC) April 2, 2013
Barca Stuff has more information on the injury:
Not surprisingly, Messi had the lone goal in the first half of the Champions League draw, as his brilliant volley from a tight angle found the net and gave the Catalans a 1-0 lead. It was his 57th goal of the season for Barcelona in all competitions.
You could make the argument that the one team that could sustain an injury to a player of Messi's caliber and still compete at a high level is Barcelona, the deepest squad in the world.
David Villa is more than capable of playing centrally, while Cesc Fabregas often stars in the false nine role for the Spanish national team. And Barca is currently 13 points clear of Real Madrid atop the La Liga table, so it's unlikely the Catalans would be affected in league play.
Still, if Messi can't return for the second leg next week, PSG will be far more confident it can pull off the UCL upset. Villa and Fabregas are both excellent players, but they don't offer the goal-scoring threat that Messi presents.
Heck, no one in the world does.
Messi will likely be just fine and able to return in time for the return draw against PSG. But you can't blame Barca's fans if they don't breathe too easily until they find out that is the case.