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Lionel Messi foot injury a real concern for Barcelona

Patrick Smith/Getty Images

As Luis Enrique prepares to return to Celta Vigo for the first time since leaving the club to become Barcelona's coach, he has a huge lineup headache ahead of him because of Lionel Messi.

The best player in the world missed the two Argentina international friendlies due to a right foot contusion, and he returned to Barcelona for some more tests on that problem. Now that the medical services are fully aware of the extent of the injury, sources with knowledge of the situation told Barça Blaugranes that they're real concerned about how bad Messi's foot is. It's not just an inflammation, and it's not a broken metatarsal. It's somewhere in the middle, which means that the injury could progress or regress, all depending on how much wear and tear Leo puts on it without being truly healed.

It doesn't look that ugly, but it's kind of serious:

The goal is to get Messi ready for the four-game marathon that includes two matches against Paris Saint-Germain and two La Liga ultra-important games against Sevilla and Valencia, that could decide Barça's fate in the Spanish League. The two matches before that 10-day stretch, against Celta Vigo and Almería, are not that tough and the Blaugrana will survive without their top player.

But after that, Messi is really needed. Barça doctors don't want to rush him from this kind of injury now in fear of damaging him long-term (just ask Kevin Durant). Leo wants to play, but he's not going to if the foot is not 100% better. Let's hope it gets 100% as soon as possible.

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