Barcelona have named their squad to face Eibar this weekend, and there is an injury boost for coach Ernesto Valverde in the form of Samuel Umtiti.
The French defender has yet to feature this season as he has continued his recovery from a knee injury which has troubled him for some time.
However, having been provisionally named in the squad, without medical clearance, it looks as though he is taking the necessary steps to become available for selection in the more immediate future, as is Junior Firpo who also gets the nod but must await the green light from the medical staff before featuring.
With one more training session to go before the game on Saturday, the defensive duo will undoubtedly hope to prove that they’re ready in the coming hours.
That will be a huge boost for the Catalan giants given the quality that Umtiti possesses, although it remains to be seen if he can displace one of Gerard Pique or Clement Lenglet in the starting line-up when considered fully fit.
It’s as expected elsewhere with all the usual suspects included, although Ousmane Dembele misses out due to suspension after receiving a red card in the win over Sevilla prior to the international break, as does Pique.
Time will tell what starting XI Valverde opts for, but ultimately Barcelona will feel confident that they’ve got enough quality and depth in the squad to secure a positive result and continue to apply pressure on rivals Real Madrid at the top of the La Liga table.
The biggest surprise though is a call-up for young goalkeeper Arnau Tenas, although it’s highly unlikely that the trip will offer him anything else other than the experience of travelling with the first-team and working closely with Marc Andre ter-Stegen.
— FC Barcelona (@FCBarcelona) October 17, 2019