Mar 28

Iniesta injury could be blessing in disguise for Barca

Barcelona’s midfield maestro Andres Iniesta has been ruled out of action for 10 days after sustaining a hamstring injury during the Blaugrana’s 1-0 win over Real Mallorca.

Tests revealed a small hamstring tear, meaning he is set to miss the Arsenal game on Wednesday, a league game against Atletico Madrid but should return for the crucial ‘Classico’ game against arch-rivals Real Madrid on 11 April. However, it may mean that he is doubtful for the second leg against Arsenal too.

Meanwhile, a Spaniard in the Gooner Talk comments section gave his view on Iniesta’s absence:

“Iniesta not playing is good, but he has not been as good since the Champions League final last year, he has been suffering from a lot of injuries lately and he is not in form at all,” ‘Walkers’ said.

“Teams think he is the weak link, and in fact he has been their weak link in a few of their games this season, lots of the goals Barcelona concede are because of his misplaced passes.

Barcelona have not been playing at their best, but remember they have Messi, the best player in the world right now, who can beat anyone by himself. In midfield Keita will probably replace Iniesta, remember he scored a wonder goal against us for Sevilla a couple of years ago. In defence, Milito might replace Pique while Maxwell is a player that lacks energy (do not get me wrong, he is not Silvestre).

Do not underestimate Barcelona, it will be a very difficult match, and we need Fabregas back.”

22-year-old Fabregas should be available despite sustaining a knock on his knee during yesterday’s 1-1 draw with Birmingham at St Andrews.

Stay tuned to Gooner Talk for all the latest build-up to Wednesday’s game!


25 Responses to “Iniesta injury could be blessing in disguise for Barca”

  1. goonersems says:

    Is pique injured?(hopefull).

  2. yiddo says:

    So instead of it being 7-0 it’ll now be 6-0 on agg. No biggie.

  3. Marko says:

    I hope Pique is injured cause he is by far their best defender also with Abidal injured Maxwell and Alves can be gotten at as they’re better going forward than defending. Missing Iniesta is huge too for them as he is their most creative midfielder but in Seydou Keita they’ll basically have another ball winner in there. Shame they won’t start Busquets as he’s fairly rubbish. Anyway key for us Wed is having most our players fit and controlling possession in midfield because thats where Barca win most of their games by having 60% of the ball. Can’t wait for this game should be interesting.

  4. Emperor Gooner says:

    what are the odds of messi being struck by lightning now ??

  5. Stone says:

    “what are the odds of messi being struck by lightning now ?? ”

    probably the same as the chances of Arsenal winning this tie
    no, I’m just kidding. I have much belief in Arsenal for this fixtures. Cesc we can. With Nasri on the pitch again and hopefully Arshavin running more than a mile it will be a big improvement from the unfocused performance at St. Andrews. It wouldn’t surprise me if he continued with Song at the back and left Denilson in midfield. Denilson usually plays well when he isn’t faced with huge muscular players to fight with. I think he and Diaby can deal very well with Xavi and Keita or whoever they throw at us. Vermaelen is strong enough for Ibra, Clichy fast enough for Messi but stopping them is easier said than done. We need eleven players with full focus for 180 minutes but none more than Gael Clichy. He stays on his heels, we are dead

  6. rafi says:

    I wouldnt read too much into our performance at st andrews. arsenal will be ready for barca, dont worry.

  7. Am says:

    Biggest load of rubbish i have ever heard.

    OK he might not be playing as good as last year but he is still one of three of their best players.

    He will be a miss for them although they still have a good squad.

  8. sameep says:

    I think the difference maker in this tie is going to be Diaby…He is the most unnoticed performer for this season..His battle with Barca midfield will decide the match, as for Messi, he cannot be man marked so again focus is important. He has to be closed down whereever possible and that should start from Arshavin and Nasri in Barca Half…

  9. AK says:

    you lot dont know anything about football if you think iniesta is poor, he is off form but he set up 2 goals on wednesday against osasuna, who do the english regard as the best player in the premiership, rooney isnt it? Well check his views on who is the best player in the world see the link below:

    barca will surely line up:
    Valdes, Alves, Puyol, Pique, Maxwell, Toure, Xavi, Busquets/keita, pedro, ibra, messi

    we should line up:
    almunia, eboue, campbell, vermaelen, clichy, song, diaby, fabregas, arshavin, bendtner, nasri, the key will be when walcott comes on the two centre backs are very slow

  10. shane says:

    iniesta is one of the best players in the world and he has just been getting back to his best form. his absence is a major bonus for arsenal. go on the gunners

  11. Impeccable1 says:

    I think our team seem a more potent attacking unit when Eboue starts. He scares the heck out of the other teams defence with his direct powerful running and dribbling and he is a better crosser of the ball than both Walcott and Sagna. I think he could’ve made the difference against Birmingham but that’s gone so let’s take the game to Barca.

  12. Stone says:

    I agree with previous posters, Eboue might start. He is excellent in one-on-one defending but lacks positional sense, especially when high crosses come his way. But Barca don’t cross high very often, although Ibra gives them another dimension. We will see Song/Denilson and Diaby lie deep to complement the attacking minded Arshavin and Nasri on the flank. Arsha is the man of big games, he will surely start and Nasri has been excellent for the last month or two. Rosicky and Theo on the bench will give us options. IF Gallas and/or RvP will be fit for the second leg it would be a huge bonus, although I doubt RvP will be near the squad then.

    PS. would be an interesting poll on this site to ask if Wenger should use Song at CB or DM in the first leg.

  13. Daymee says:

    Messi only needs 2 chances to score 1 and it scares me that he’s going to turn Campbell inside out. Messi is good at turning defenders, even defenders faster than Campbell were turned by Messi. That is a weak link and I think we should pair Song with Vermaelen. To go through on these 2 legs it is vital that we keep a clean sheet. If we concede, then we end up potless again. We don’t need a DM against Barca. Eboue interchanging with Rosicky will do the magic.


    Sagna Song Vermaelen Clichy
    Rosicky Fabregas Nasri
    Eboue Bendtner Arshavin

  14. jj says:

    Iniesta might not be as good as last season but he is still very very good and considering he was our best player last year that would b hard to keep up that form and almost none of the goals against barca come from misplaced passes from him so its good 4 u hes not playing but the thing that arsenal need is 4 ibra TO play bcause wiv him we hardly look like we can score but wen hes not there we look like the same old barca. Gonna b a great game regaurdless tho

  15. krieger says:

    im guessing gallas is definitely a no for wednesday then? Vermaelen is gonna have extra work cut out for him, having to cover for campbell’s lack of pace. But Im guessing wenger might try go slightly more conservative to try keep a clean sheet, because that is super vital.

    **Goalie when needed**
    sagna Song Vermaelen Clichy
    Nasri Diaby fabregas
    Eboue Bendtner Arshavin

  16. EC says:

    Important for Arsenal to keep a clean sheet in the home leg. I hope Wenger doesn’t opt for dangerous offensive tactics.

    Unless he decides we can outscore Barca.

  17. Amrit says:

    i dont see why we are soo scared of barcelona..everywhere i go,i see everyone telling arsenal is going to lose 7-0 etc etc..

    see i think its all down to arshavin.For me the reason we won 5-0 against porto is because arshavin was focused. He is a big-game player and he soo often delivers..see russia,st.petersburg. He said that he wants to win the champions league with arsenal and he knows that is now and he is going to do it.
    and speaking about barcelona. the only threat i see is messi. Xavi has not been as sublime as he was last year and soo is iniesta. Pedro is good but he can be stopped. Maxwell can be easily taken and dani alves’s croses have been horrible..his game has taken a step down. and with arshavin playing upfront i dont think he will have the balls to take marauding runs.. yaya toure is also good but he wont stop fabregas at his game..busquets is the most overrated player in my opinion..Ibra is a waste of time, he isnt going to do anything. unless its a one on on i dont expect ibra to score.
    And as Wenger said the other team cant attack if we have the ball soo all we need to do is keep the ball. Im very confident that we can pull this off provided we go in with the right attitude.

  18. jason says:

    eboue’s my idol

  19. king gooner says:

    oi!yiddo!stick to your johstones paint trophy or whatever mickey mouse trophy you’re involved with at present…if any

  20. ScotchEggsRule says:

    yiddo says:
    March 28, 2010 at 7:02 pm
    So instead of it being 7-0 it’ll now be 6-0 on agg. No biggie.
    You remember playing Barcelona in a FRIENDLY earlier this seaosn don’t you?

  21. andrew says:

    messi vs eboue, no thanks

    definetely play sagna

  22. Callum says:

    well i dont want to see campbell facing messi so i would go with

    Eboue Sagna Verminator Clichy
    Diaby Song Fabregas
    Nasri Bendtner Arshavin

    i no sagna cb might not be good but atleast has has pace

  23. Joakim says:

    The team is certainly going to be:


    Sagna Song Vermaelen Clichy

    Denilson Diaby


    Nasri Bendtner Arshavin

    We definitely have a chance to play well on wednesday with this team of excellent players, but I think we need a two-goal lead to take with us to Camp Nou. Hope we play aggressive for 90 minutes so we get the result we need!

  24. THEGOON says:

    oh barca barca how i wish ur fantasy were true…..some..idiot…said 6-0 to barca. hmmmm. i simply want to get this over and done with,.Get fabregas back????, how idiotic? does he belong there is the question? arent barca and its fans tired of looking like idiots going on about how he belongs there. mann!pliz get over it!its called football ever heard of contracts, they man is a gunnner thru and thru so purleease take your crap about him being barca style blah blah cos despite having began school there, he is playing the team of his career so who cares if he was brought up in Camp Nou, he obviously would not be the player he is at camp nou…u think so..oh yes then why did barca fail to see what Wenger saw hmmmmmm? answer that question? duh.Barca fans ur insecurity is so so soooooooo sickening, u never hear arsenal laud themselves over bentley, adebayor, the rest, get over it flippin heck… Captain Cesc in red and white- Gunner for life!

  25. g4eva says:

    gallas has been training since last week dont forget. If so why would he not start. It may have been a rather large absence but he had been playing for the whole season so could not have lost is that quickly.


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