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Barcelona's Lionel Messi moves closer to return from injury

Updated: Wednesday, 18 Dec 2013 18:16 | Comments

Lionel Messi's recovery from a hamstring injury is on track
Lionel Messi's recovery from a hamstring injury is on track

Lionel Messi is making good progress in his recovery from a hamstring injury, Barcelona have announced.

The Argentina forward is in Buenos Aires as he continues his rehabilitation from the injury which has kept him out for more than a month.

Club doctor Richard Pruna and director of sport Andoni Zubizarreta have travelled to Argentina to check on his recovery.
Pruna performed a physical examination and an ultrasound on Wednesday which showed Messi was "making good progress".

The injury is set to keep Messi out for between six and eight weeks in total, meaning he is in line for a January return.

Messi has been in his home country since 29 November, working on what his club called "the second phase of his recovery programme" at the Argentinian Football Association facility.

The 26-year-old will undergo further tests on Friday to determine whether he can begin "the third phase" of his programme.

Messi has been working under the supervision of members of the Argentina national side's medical team and has been joined, as planned, by Barca physio Elvio Paolorosso.

The forward injured his hamstring away to Real Betis on 10 November.

The Catalan giants have been below par, by their own high standards, without the four-time world player of the year.

They have lost to Ajax in the Champions League and Atletico Madrid in the Primera Division in their seven matches since.

Barca still lead the table, though, level on points with Atletico and face Manchester City in the last 16 of the Champions League.
Barca travel to City for the first leg on 18 February, with the return leg on 12 March.

Messi should be back in plenty of time for those matches.

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