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Luis Suarez, Neymar, Lionel Messi Open to Being Rested in Valencia 2nd Leg

Barcelona's Uruguayan forward Luis Suarez (R) celebrates a goal with Barcelona's Argentinian forward Lionel Messi during the Spanish Copa del Rey (King's Cup) football match FC Barcelona vs Valencia CF at the Camp Nou stadium in Barcelona on February 3, 2016.   AFP PHOTO / LLUIS GENE / AFP / LLUIS GENE        (Photo credit should read LLUIS GENE/AFP/Getty Images)
LLUIS GENE/Getty Images
Tom SunderlandFeatured ColumnistFebruary 4, 2016

Barcelona maestro Luis Suarez has said he, as well as team-mates Lionel Messi and Neymar, would all "understand" if manager Luis Enrique decided to rest them for the Copa del Rey semi-final second leg against Valencia after winning the opener 7-0.

Suarez netted four times in Wednesday evening's one-sided tie, while Messi added three goals of his own, and when asked if all three of the MSN trio could sit out Wednesday's reverse fixture, the Uruguayan replied, per Marca"We'll understand if the coach rests all three of us in the return leg."

Suarez (four) and Messi (three) led Valencia to a 7-0 win over Valencia on Wednesday.
Suarez (four) and Messi (three) led Valencia to a 7-0 win over Valencia on Wednesday.Manu Fernandez/Associated Press

Barca are as good as in the final following their first-leg demolition of Gary Neville's side, and they look certain to face either Celta Vigo or Sevilla in this season's climactic Copa del Rey decider.

However, Suarez has refused to count his chickens and insisted their job isn't done until the aggregate scoreline reads in their favour following next Wednesday's second leg: "We have a huge lead, but you never know what might happen."

Enrique's men will be on guard as they prepare to travel to the Mestalla, but Valencia's chances of overhauling Barca's lead seem slim to none, especially considering they have scored just eight goals in nine games under Neville.

The Catalan giants have now scored more than 100 goals this season, including 24 goals in their seven Copa del Rey matches thus far. The Secret Footballer examined how Suarez has been the leading contributor to their tally:

Without the MSN trio in his XI, Enrique can be expected to alter his formation and hand starting berths to the likes of Munir El Haddadi or Aleix Vidal, with Arda Turan possibly pushed into a more advanced role.

Barcelona were tested during Messi' injury absence earlier this season, but Suarez provided the answer in front of goal, and Spanish daily AS confirmed his astronomical goals-per-game ratio:

The Blaugrana are attempting to become the first team to successfully defend the Copa del Rey since they achieved the feat in 1997 and 1998, having claimed a European and domestic treble last term.

Valencia will fancy their chances more without Suarez, Messi and Neymar present in the return leg, but it's testament to Barca's quality that they can even afford to see their most prized assets sit out the semi-final second leg.  

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