Lionel Messi part of senior Barcelona duo who have doubts over five current stars

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After slipping to a 1-0 defeat to rivals Espanyol in the Copa del Rey, Lionel Messi and Luis Suarez are reportedly unsure over some of their teammates.

The Catalan giants will look to overturn their deficit in the second leg at the Nou Camp next week, but the damage may well have already been done for five players who featured in that loss.

While it’s worth noting that Messi missed a penalty in the game which could have been crucial, naturally the spotlight isn’t pointed at the Barca icon given how much he’s given to the club over the years.

Instead, according to Diario Gol, as re-reported by The Express, Aleix Vidal, Lucas Digne, Denis Suarez, Carles Alena and Rafinha are in the firing line.

Following a dinner between Messi and Suarez before the game, it’s claimed that they already had their concerns, and so with Ernesto Valverde making changes with those named above coming in only for Barcelona to lose, it will add further fuel to those reports that the pressure is on the quintet.

Whether or not Messi and Suarez’s views have an influence on Valverde and the hierarchy is another matter, but mere reports of a lack of faith from two leading figures in the dressing room is surely not going to help the atmosphere at the club.

All five players named in the report have struggled to establish themselves in the starting line-up to this point, but if they were to be offloaded, Barcelona would undoubtedly need to be careful as while they may not be at the forefront of Valverde’s plans, they offer a lot of squad depth and cover in key positions.

In contrast to that point, Barca haven’t done too badly without them playing a pivotal role, as they sit nine points clear at the top of the La Liga table and remain in the hunt for cup glory and Champions League success in what could be another memorable campaign.

More Stories Aleix Vidal Carles Alena Denis Suarez Lionel Messi Lucas Digne Luis Suarez Rafinha