MESSI AVAILABLE FOR BARCELONA V CELTA, CONFIRMS LUIS ENRIQUE
By Matthew Rogerson
The coach will have the two players available for the weekend and said that he does not believe that teams are “scared” of squad
Both players were absent from Barca’s Copa del Rey draw with Valencia on Wednesday, with Luis Enrique leaving out a host of star names after amassing a 7-0 first-leg advantage in their semi-final tie.
Messi underwent medical tests for renal colic early this week and was not risked at Mestalla while Arda has been nursing a foot injury in recent weeks.
But when asked about Messi’s availability, the Barca boss told reporters on Saturday: “Yes, he can play tomorrow.
“They’re both okay. Arda took a knock, which was a knock-on from his warm-up against Valencia so there was no point taking risks over it [on Wednesday].
“But no, they’re both okay.”
The likes of Luis Suarez, Neymar, Andres Iniesta and Gerard Pique were all rested for the midweek trip to Valencia but will likely return against Celta this weekend.
Barca were beaten 4-1 by Luis Enrique’s former club in September’s reverse fixture and the coach expects a similarly ambitious display from Sunday’s visitors at Camp Nou.
“I don’t think teams are scared of us. I don’t get that sensation,” he added. “I managed smaller teams and that motivates you.
“You really want to hurt teams, you don’t get that feeling? Maybe that’s more a question for opponents than myself.
“They play daring football although they are missing some important players.
“For me, all my players are important. Some will play more than others but they are all important.
“We achieve as a complete squad – we win and we lose together. That’s how a football team works. Some play more and have a greater weight in the squad but the whole team is important.”