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Ex-Arsenal captain finally cleared to make Barcelona debut after eight-month wait

Former Arsenal captain Thomas Vermaelen has been given the medical all-clear to finally make his Barcelona bow, eight months after joining the club.

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The Belgium international has been sidelined with a thigh injury ever since he joined the Catalan giants, preventing him from taking part in any fixtures for Luis Enrique’s team.

However, Marca claims his long-awaited debut could be just around the corner after physios determined he is ready for competitive action again. Doctors say he is recovered from the surgery he had at the turn of the year and can be considered for selection.

Enrique did include the 29-year-old in his party for last week’s Champions League clash with Paris Saint-Germain in the absence of medical approval, but did not ask him to play.

Vermaelen can now look forward to featuring in top-level football for the first time since June 22 last year, when he was in the Belgium side against Russia in the World Cup.

After leaving north London because he fell down the pecking order at the Emirates Stadium, the centre-half will feel he has a point to prove to both Arsenal and his current club.

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