Barcelona boss Quique Setien has disclosed his plans for the club’s return to action on Saturday against Real Mallorca, as well as the careful approach that will be adopted in handing out playing time to Luis Suarez.
Setien will likely start Suarez in the game but admitted that it would be careless to give the veteran an extended run. He added that Lionel Messi will be 100% ready by the time action begins.
“Luis Suarez could play from the start, but I find it reckless to make him play the whole game,” Setien said in a chat with Tot Costa, via Barca Blaugranes.
It can be recalled that the Uruguayan forward underwent surgery on his right knee in January. Before the procedure, his last game was in the semi-finals of the Spanish Super Cup against Atletico Madrid.
The striker has been in recovery on the sidelines for four months and returned to training early May. Regardless, he was given the approval to return to action by the club’s medical services as they continue preparation for the restart of La Liga.
“After more than four months out due to injury, the Uruguayan is now ready to return for the final part of the season. Suárez returned to training at the beginning of May and his return is good news for coach Quique Setién as it means he will have the striker available for the delayed final phase of the campaign with silverware at stake,” a statement from the club’s official website read.
Setien has been worried about the health issues his players have been facing and this includes the right quad injury to Lionel Messi which ensured that he missed several training schedules ahead of their comeback.
Regardless, “El Maestro” stays defiant, saying he has “no doubt” that the duo will be ready to lead the team into action, as the rest of the squad are expected to be ready and raring to go.
“It’s not just Messi – other players haven’t trained because they’ve had niggles,” Setien told Movistar, via Goal. “It’s happened to lots of them.
“Leo has a cramp that’s not hugely significant. I think he’s perfectly fine and he won’t have any problems. It’s the same for any other player. We’ll see how the league goes and what circumstances come up.”
Meanwhile, the duo of Lionel Messi and Luis Suarez have scored a combined 30 goals in La Liga fixtures this season. The Argentine has 19 to his name whilst the Uruguayan has 11.
Barcelona currently lead La Liga with 58 points, closely pursued by perennial rivals Real Madrid in a title race that has been closely contested this far.