Barcelona have confirmed that winger Ousmane Dembele is back for another period on the sidelines after suffering another hamstring injury.
The Frenchman made his first appearance of the season as a substitute in the second half of the recent 1-0 win over Dynamo Kiev, after missing the entire campaign so far due to a problem with his right hamstring which he raised at the 2020 European Championships.
He managed 25 minutes against Dynamo, but it will be his only action for a while as Barcelona confirmed that Dembele has now injured his left hamstring and is set for an unspecified period on the side.
The injury is described as a “strain” and hopes not to be too serious, but Barcelona declined to estimate how long he will be away.
Dembele has missed 98 matches due to injury since joining the club in 2017. Number 99 comes on Saturday when he is out of a match with Celta Vigo, and if he remains injured over the international break, he can reach the century mark against Espanyol two weeks later.
To make matters worse for interim manager Sergi Barjuan, Barcelona will also be without the right-back (outer?) Sergino Dest after the American suffered back problems during training.
The couple now go to the sidelines, where they will join Gerard Pique, Pedri, Sergi Roberto, Sergio Aguero, Martin Braithwaite and Moussa Wague.
Dembele’s renewed absence leaves Barcelona in the lurch in the attack. Memphis Depay, Luuk de Jong, Ansu Fati and Philippe Coutinho are Barjuan’s only senior options, with young Yusuf Demir another option as well.
Barcelona has fallen to ninth place in La Liga, nine points behind leader Real Sociedad who have played one game less.
They have played as many matches as second-placed Real Madrid, who already have an eight-point lead over their tough rivals.
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