European round-up: Messi injury worry after Barcelona are held

European round-up: Messi injury worry after Barcelona are held

Messi is Barcelona's talismanic striker who has caused Real players plenty of misery down the years.

Messi scored twice in the clash as Barca came from two goals down to draw at the Nou Camp. However, he completed Tuesday's session and has been named among the 19 players called up for the first leg of the semifinal tie at Camp Nou. We have a week off next week, no Champions League game, so we will get a rest then. "If he is fit, he will play and if he is not, he will not play".

Barca might also be cautious, given they have a testing month of fixtures ahead.

Valverde indicated he would be cautious with Messi's fitness.

"I imagine that he can't be too bad, but I'm not able to reveal anything".

"If La Liga ended tomorrow or if it was our last game, maybe [I would take a risk]. but if a player has an injury, whether it's Messi or not, I prefer to be careful".

It is unclear whether Messi, the all-time top goalscorer in Spanish football, as well as in the "Clasico", will be fit for the game. "If Messi's ready he will play, if he's not he won't".

Valverde admitted he might have to rotate his line-up given the number of important games coming up.

"It was already complicated in January but with this semi-final at a very high level, more league games, more games in the Champions League knock-out stages, we have to walk a fine line".

"But we still haven't hit the decisive part of the season yet".

Barca's insatiable captain equalised in the 64th with an unstoppable curling strike from outside the area, averting a first league loss for the league leaders since November and taking them on to 50 points from 22 games. They appear a team transformed since the 5-1 defeat by Barca in October.

Madrid, meanwhile, will play on Sunday before the second leg, as was the case this past weekend before the first leg, meaning Barça should arrive slightly fresher. "In October they were going through a delicate period but now they are better. We expect the best version of Madrid on Wednesday, as we have seen in recent weeks".

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