The dreaded international break is back this week which means Barcelona stars are off all over the place to join up with their national teams.
The good news is that it’s the last one of the year and once it’s all over we can get back to business with some tasty fixtures to look forward to before the end of 2019.
Meanwhile, here’s a check on which Barca stars are away and what they will be getting up to over the next couple of weeks.
Marc-Andre ter Stegen
Germany’s top goalkeeper is likely to spend the next two weeks on the bench for Joachim Low’s side wondering once again why he’s playing second fiddle to Manuel Neuer. Germany haven’t quite qualified for Euro 2020 yet and play Belarus in Mönchengladbach on Saturday and Northern Ireland in Frankfurt the following Tuesday.
Moussa Wague: Senegal
With Nelson Semedo injured and Sergi Roberto suspended for Barcelona’s next league game the club will be praying that Moussa Wague returns from Senegal duty unscathed. The Lions of Teranga play AFCON qualifiers against Congo on Wednesday and eSwatini on Sunday.
Clement Lenglet and Antoine Griezmann: France
World champions France are another team who have not quite qualified for Euro 2020. Les Bleus are in second place in Group H but level on points with leaders Turkey. Didier Deschamps’ side finish their campaign with a visit from Moldova on Thursday and a trip to Albania on Sunday. In case you’re wondering there’s no Samuel Umtiti or Ousmane Dembele in the France squad.
Sergio Busquets and Ansu Fati: Spain and Spain U21s
Sergio Busquets is once again the only Barcelona player in the Spain squad, but the team have already booked their place at Euro 2020. Robert Moreno’s side finish off with home games against Malta on Friday and Romania on Sunday. Meanwhile, Ansu Fati will be hoping for more game time with the Under-21s. They play North Macedonia on Thursday and then head to Israel on Tuesday in Euro qualifying.
Frenkie de Jong: Netherlands
Frenkie de Jong’s Netherlands top Group C ahead of Germany and Northern Ireland heading into the final round of fixtures. Ronald Koeman’s side will be expected to qualify and are up against Northern Ireland at Windsor Park on Saturday and Estonia in Amsterdam on Tuesday.
Brazil have called up Arthur for two friendlies over the international break. Tite’s men play Argentina in Saudi Arabia on Friday and then head to Abu Dhabi to take on South Korea on Tuesday.
Ivan Rakitic: Croatia
Ivan Rakitic can be forgiven for looking forward to the international break as he may actually get a rare start. Croatia have two home Euro 2020 qualifiers against Slovakia on Saturday and Georgia on Tuesday.
Arturo Vidal: Chile
Arturo Vidal is in a Chile squad made up entirely of overseas-based players. The international break comes amid a time of political unrest, and their friendly against Bolivia has been postponed due to protests in both countries. They are still due to play Peru in Lima on November 19.
Luis Suarez: Uruguay
Luis Suarez has struggled with injury over the last week or so but returned to action as a substitute against Celta Vigo on Saturday. He’s in the Uruguay squad which may not impress Barca too much given his physical problems this season. Oscar Tabarez’s side play Hungary in Budapest on Friday and then take on Argentina in Israel on Monday.
Lionel Messi: Argentina
Lionel Messi is also back on international duty after serving a three-match ban for his Copa America sending off and his subsequent comments about corruption. Argentina have two very tasty friendlies against Brazil and Uruguay.
Barcelona vs. Cartagena
The players left back in Barcelona are scheduled to train on Monday, Tuesday and Thursday and will then be given the weekend off. However, the club do have a charity friendly on Wednesday against Cartagena at the Estadio Cartagonova to support victims of flooding in Murcia. mbélé