La Liga News 

Impressive Vermaelen suffers hamstring injury

Barcelona defender Thomas Vermaelen suffered a hamstring tear against Real Betis on Sunday evening and will miss a number of games.

The Belgian defender pulled up towards the end of the first half at the Benito Villamarin with the problem, which the Catalan club are now undergoing tests on to determine the length of recovery.

The 32-year-old has been in impressive form of late for Barca, covering for the injured Samuel Umtiti, who returned to replace the centre-back during the 5-0 win over Real Betis.

The former Arsenal man was involved in eight clean sheets in his last nine games for Barca, who lead the La Liga table by 11 points over second placed Atletico Madrid thanks to the win over Betis.

Luis Suarez (2), Ivan Rakitic and Lionel Messi (2) were the scorers for Ernesto Valverde’s side on Sunday evening, overcoming a tricky first half which ended goal-less.

Barca return to training on Monday morning, preparing to face Espanyol in the Copa del Rey on Thursday, hoping to overturn a 1-0 first leg defeat, which was their only defeat in all competitions this season.

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Brazilian play-maker Philippe Coutinho could make his debut in the game, although it is thought he will wait until the home fixture against Alaves at the weekend.

 

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