In a surprising move, to say the least, Ernesto Valverde has decided to keep Lionel Messi out of the starting XI in FC Barcelona’s big UEFA Champions League match against Juventus.
XI Barça#JuveBarça pic.twitter.com/BhLdAExqkO— FC Barcelona (@FCBarcelona) November 22, 2017
Thankfully, it’s not because of any injury concerns, says journalist Gerard Romero. He says it is a “technical decision.” and Messi is resting up for Barcelona’s huge clash against Valencia on Sunday.
If so, that’s one hell of a bold move from Valverde, but there is logic to it. Barcelona are almost assured a spot in the knockout stages, and a draw tonight would be enough to win the group outright.
Meanwhile, Valencia are flying high and pose a serious threat to the Blaugrana in La Liga, just four points behind.
Still, this is not something you’d expect... and let’s not forget Barça are not assured of anything in the Champions League yet.