Xavi Frustrated as Barcelona Held to Goalless Draw Amidst Injury Setbacks

By Xorkpe Sosu 3 Min Read

Barcelona endured a disappointing evening on Sunday, failing to extend their winning streak against Athletic Club, The match ended in a goalless draw at San Mamés, marred by two major injuries to Frenkie de Jong and Pedri.

Frenkie de Jong was forced off the pitch on a medical cart after sustaining an injury against Athletic Club, with Pedri also suffering a limp off for Barcelona.

The Netherlands international fell in agony following an awkward landing while challenging for a header with Athletic Club’s Unai Gomez.

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Initially, it appeared that de Jong might be able to walk off the field as the medical team attended to his ankle, but he soon had to be stretchered off.

Injury Double Blow: De Jong and Pedri Out as Barcelona Stumble Against Athletic Club"

Barcelona’s woes deepened as Pedri had to be substituted just before half-time, seemingly having tweaked his hamstring during a clearance.

Injury Double Blow: De Jong and Pedri Out as Barcelona Stumble Against Athletic Club"

De Jong’s ankle injury appeared more severe than Pedri’s muscular problem. Both players will undergo tests with the club’s medical team upon their return to Barcelona, leaving Xavi concerned about the fitness of two key players during a crucial stage of the season.

According to Diario AS, Pedri is likely to miss Barcelona’s Champions League round of 16 second-leg clash against Napoli on March 12 due to a relapse of a thigh problem, while De Jong’s participation remains in doubt.

What’s next for Barcelona after Major Injuries?

With three of their four main midfielders now injured, Barcelona may need to rely even more on their academy to fill the gaps.

“It’s unfortunate because of the injuries to two very important players”,  Xavi Hernandez told the media after the full time whistle in Bilbao.

“Between today and tomorrow we’ll know more, but they don’t look good. We’re affected, I think the team could have been affected as well, and I imagine those two absentees will be for many games.”

Xavi also addressed the draw at San Mamés, acknowledging that the absence of the two injured players had a noticeable impact on his team’s performance.

“Maybe the injuries affected the team too much but then in the second half with Lamine we created some chances but it was not out game today,” he added.

“We didn’t play well. We cannot be happy today because we need to do more. Everybody, me as a coach, the players. OK, we need to improve. It’s a very big opportunity that we missed today. We need to recover well, think about Mallorca, and keep going.”

Barcelona have a few days to recuperate before hosting Real Mallorca on Friday. Mallorca enters the game fresh from a 1-0 victory over Girona on Sunday.

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