AP NEWS

Dembele likely to miss rest of the season with muscle injury

February 4, 2020 GMT

BARCELONA, Spain (AP) — Barcelona has another problem in attack as Ousmane Dembele has a muscle injury that is likely to keep him sidelined for the rest of the season.

Barcelona said tests conducted on Tuesday showed Dembele has a hamstring tear in his right leg.

“In the next few hours a decision will be made on the treatment to be followed for his recovery,” the club said in statement.

Spanish media said Dembele was likely to need surgery.

The French forward left the team’s practice on Monday complaining of muscle pain in his right leg. The club initially said the problem was prompted by muscle fatigue.

Dembele was in the final stages of his recovery from a hamstring injury that had kept him sidelined since November. He had just recently rejoined his teammates in full practices.

It was just the latest of several muscle problems for the 22-year-old forward since he joined the Catalan club in 2017.

Barcelona had been eagerly awaiting for Dembele’s return with striker Luis Suárez out injured since the beginning of the year and not expected back until the latter stages of the season.

The club did not make any major signings to immediately boost its attack in last month’s transfer window. It acquired Francisco Trincão from Portuguese club Braga for 31 million euros ($34 million), but the 20-year-old Portuguese forward won’t join the squad until the end of the season.

Barcelona is second in the Spanish league, three points behind Real Madrid. The team’s next game is Thursday at Athletic Bilbao in the quarterfinals of the Copa del Rey.

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