Barcelona manager Luis Enrique has said football will “lose” without Lionel Messi, after the club confirmed on Wednesday that the Argentine will miss the next three weeks with a groin injury.
Messi was taken off with in the second half of Barca’s 1-1 La Liga draw with Atletico Madrid on Wednesday, and is expected to miss the upcoming trips to Sporting Gijon, Borussia Monchengladbach and Celta Vigo.
It is also anticipated he will be sidelined for Argentina’s World Cup qualifiers against Peru and Paraguay on October 6th and 11th, respectively, before potentially returning against Deportivo La Coruna on October. 15th.
“But without Leo we all lose. Football loses. We have to find solutions, knowing that with Messi we’re very strong. We know that we have to win.”
It’s the second time this season Messi has injured his groin, although this time the problem is at the top of his right leg, not his left leg.
He also missed seven weeks of action at a similar stage last season when he picked up a knee injury in a win against Las Palmas.
Barca led 1-0 when Messi was taken off against Atletico, with Angel Correa scoring an equaliser for Diego Simeone’s side almost immediately after coming on as a second-half substitute.
Meanwhile, Luis Enrique refused to blame Javier Mascherano for the draw after the Argentine international slipped to gift Correa the leveller, saying it’s something which could happen to any player at any time.