October 24, 2021

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Barcelona suffer double blow as Koeman faces ‘El Clasico’ dilemma

Barcelona suffer double blow as Koeman faces ‘El Clasico’ dilemma
Barcelona's injury woes are set to continue with Ronald Koeman not getting a reprieve in terms of losing first-team players. Ronald Araujo is the latest casualty of the international break after the defender picked up an injury while on duty with Uruguay.The center-back started for Uruguay against Argentina in their 3-0 World Cup qualifier defeat.…

Barcelona’s injury woes are set to continue with Ronald Koeman not getting a reprieve in terms of losing first-team players. Ronald Araujo is the latest casualty of the international break after the defender picked up an injury while on duty with Uruguay.

The center-back started for Uruguay against Argentina in their 3-0 World Cup qualifier defeat. Araujo picked up the injury during the game, and it has now been confirmed by the Catalan club. The right hamstring injury is expected to keep him out for a few weeks, which will come as a blow to Koeman, who has relied on the South American at the start of the campaign.

“Tests carried out by the Uruguayan Football Association’s medical department have confirmed that first-teamer Ronald Araujo picked up a right hamstring injury during the match against Argentina on Sunday. He will return to Barcelona where the Club’s medical department will assess his injury,” Barcelona said via a statement.

Araujo has made seven La Liga appearances and played Champions League games this season. He has been used alongside Gerard Pique, while also competing for a place with Eric Garcia for a regular starting role.

Araujo is not the only player Koeman will be without going forward. La Masia graduate Pedri is also expected to miss the upcoming games against Valencia and Dynamo Kiev. The 18-year-old picked up a thigh injury ahead of the international break and is expected to sit out the upcoming games with Barcelona hoping he will be ready for the El Clasico on Oct. 24.

Amid all the injury woes for Koeman, there is a silver lining for the Dutch manager. Summer arrival Sergio Aguero and winger Ousmane Dembele, who have been out of action since the summer are on the mend and are expected to be available for selection after the break.

The duo’s return will come as a major boost for the manager, who’s future at Barcelona has been questioned in recent weeks. The La Liga giants are currently ninth in the league, while also having lost their first two Champions League group games.

Ronald Koeman
Ronald Koeman returns to the club he helped win the European Cup in 1992
Josep LAGO/AFP

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