Ronald Araújo and Jules Koundé set for time on sidelines

Barcelona will be without defenders Ronald Araújo and Jules Koundé for several weeks after the pair both returned from international duty with injuries.

Tests on Saturday have confirmed that Araújo has suffered a groin injury. AS report that he faces up to seven weeks on the sidelines, ruling him out of almost all Barça’s remaining games in 2022.

Koundé limped out of France’s UEFA Nations League win over Austria on Thursday. After initial tests conducted by Les Bleus, it was feared he could be out for a month, but having undergone further checks following his return to Barcelona, his expected recovery time has been reduced to between three and four weeks.

The injuries are a blow for Barcelona, who have started the league campaign in a positive manner. Head coach Xavi now has only has three fit central defenders at his disposal – Eric García, Andreas Christensen and the experienced Gerard Piqué.

At right-back, Barça have alternatives in Sergi Roberto and Héctor Bellerín.

GSFN

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