FC Barcelona hit by Coutinho injury blow




Midfielder Philippe Coutinho injured his left hamstring in the 3-1 home defeat to Real Madrid on Saturday, FC Barcelona said on Sunday.

This has effectively ruled him out of his side’s UEFA Champions League showdown away to Juventus on Wednesday.

A statement from Barca on Sunday said the Brazilian was unavailable due to the injury, without saying when he would return to action.

Coutinho, who is Barca’s most expensive ever signing, played the full 90 minutes during the match.

He missed a clear chance to put his side ahead in the “Classico” when the game was poised at 1-1, missing the target with a header from close range.

The Brazilian had been on a positive run of form in his first season back with the club after spending the last campaign on loan at Bayern Munich.

He has scored two goals and provided two assists in six competitive matches.

AS newspaper in Spain reported on Sunday that Coutinho could be out for three weeks.

He looks set to miss the game at Juventus plus Barca’s La Liga fixtures away to Alaves and at home to Real Betis.

The Brazilian could also miss the UEFA Champions League match at home to Dynamo Kyiv.

His injury could however be good news for Barca’s two other most expensive players, Antoine Griezmann and Ousmane Dembele.

They were both left out of the starting line-up against Real Madrid on Saturday.

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