The majority of the FC Barcelona players absent for club obligations will shortly return, and the Catalans will be preparing for their encounter against Athletic Club this weekend.
Barcelona’s ranks will be substantially depleted even with the return of these foreign players because a number of their key players are now sidelined due to injuries. Even though Xavi will be bothered by these injuries, they will still give other bench players a chance to play and show the coach and the crowd what they’re made of.
Inigo Martinez likely to start against Athletic Club
One such player who is likely to benefit from the injury to Jules Kounde is Inigo Martinez. The defender joined Barcelona last summer but was unable to participate fully in the preseason as he came with problems in his foot.
These physical problems have subsided now, and as SPORT has noted, he is highly likely to start the upcoming game against Athletic Club, the side he left to join Barcelona last summer. The prospect of facing his previous club is in no way impacting the defender though, who is training for this match as he would have trained for any other match.
Training even in the off days
In fact, the player has been even more committed in his training lately, in order to ensure that he retains his physical fitness to take maximum advantage of any opportunity that he gets to feature on the pitch. He did not even leave the club on the off days that Xavi had given to players who were not representing their national sides.
He will be fully driven to face his old club on Sunday, but the disagreements he had with his former teammates after he decided to leave the club are not on his mind. His exit from Athletic Club was turbulent, but his former teammates have always spoken positively about him, and he still maintains friendship with some of his former teammates.