As we move closer to the Champions League quarterfinal second leg, Barcelona keeps getting bad news.
After midfielder Rafinha Alcântara was diagnosed with an adductor injury that will keep him out of Wednesday's encounter with Atlético Madrid, backup defender Thomas Vermaelen is also unlikely to play or be on the bench at the Vicente Calderón stadium due to a calf injury, the club announced on Monday.
Vermaelen is the fourth Blaugrana defender injured in the last few weeks, joining Adriano Correia (already cleared), Jérémy Mathieu and Aleix Vidal, forcing coach Luis Enrique to suspend his rotation system and use his starters from now until the end of the season. Another defender, Gerard Piqué, is doubtful for Wednesday because of a knock against Real Sociedad.
After an entire debut season battling a groin problem, Vermaelen had a much more meaningful contribution to the squad in his second campaign, but after a good start, the Belgian had a drop in form and saw very little playing time in the last few months. But now, with all the injuries happening at the same time, he could be necessary, but he is also out.
This is definitely not a good moment in Barça's season.