Barcelona Leave their captain Out of Squad to Face Dynamo Kyiv as Koeman claims his star man ‘needs to rest’

Barcelona have left their captain Lionel Messi out of their 19-man squad to face Dynamo Kiev in the Champions League on Tuesday.

Messi has missed only 45 minutes this season and, despite a laboured start to the 2020/21 campaign in La Liga, Barcelona have taken maximum points from their three Champions League games so far and are on the brink of securing progress to the knockout stages of the competition.

Manager Ronald Koeman has decided to rest Messi and midfielder Frenkie de Jong for the Group G match in Ukraine with fixtures coming thick and fast and a growing concern with injuries in the squad.

Messi has also flown back and forth from South America twice in the last six weeks for international duty, playing 90 minutes in four World Cup qualifiers for Argentina.

Gerard Pique suffered a freak collision with Angel Correa which bent his knee awkwardly and Koeman is now working to avoid further long-term injuries to key players such as Messi.

19-man Barcelona Squad vs Dynamo Kviv

Goalkeepers: Marc-Andre Ter Stegen, Neto, Inaki Pena.

Defenders: Sergino Dest, Clement Lenglet, Jordi Alba, Junior Firpo, Oscar Mingueza.

Midfielders: Carles Alena, Miralem Pjanic, Riqui Puig, Philippe Coutinho, Pedri, Matheus Fernandes.

Forwards: Antoine Griezmann, Martin Braithwaite, Ousmane Dembele, Francisco Trincao, Konrad de la Fuente.

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