Blow for Barcelona as key man ruled out for second leg against Napoli

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Barcelona’s Champions League night at Napoli is going from bad to worse.

An insipid first half against the Italians in their Round of 16 game saw Quique Setien’s side unable to get their natural game going.

When Dries Mertens bent a superb opener into the top corner, it sent the San Paolo Stadium wild, and the hosts then looked comfortable for the most part.

Not too long into the second half, and Sergio Busquets was lucky to stay on the pitch after a nasty challenge left Mertens pole-axed.

The referee quickly brandished the yellow card, but any thoughts that the midfielder had somehow got away with it were soon dispelled when it was realised that the caution rules him out of the return leg at the Camp Nou.

Although Barcelona do have cover in that area with both Ivan Rakitic or Arthur Melo able to play the same role, losing Busquets is still a hammer blow for the Blaugrana.

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