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Alejandro Balde looks distraught as he’s forced off injured for Barcelona

The left-back went off in the first half

Athletic Club v FC Barcelona - Copa del Rey Photo by Diego Souto/Getty Images

Barcelona were hit by yet another injury blow on Wednesday as Alejandro Balde was forced off injured in the first half of the Copa del Rey clash with Athletic.

Balde started at left-back but pulled up after around 20 minutes with what looked like a hamstring injury.

The youngster went to ground and looked pretty distraught, thumping the ground in frustration and putting his jersey over his face. He did receive medical attention on the pitch but was unable to continue and had to go off.

Xavi sent on Hector Fort to replace Balde and may now have to cope without the youngster for a little while.

The Barcelona boss is short of left-back options at present. Marcos Alonso is also injured, while Joao Cancelo is only just back after a spell on the sidelines.

Fort may therefore be in line for more minutes in the coming weeks, particularly if Balde is forced onto the sidelines for a significant period.

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