Barcelona coach Ernesto Valverde revealed that it is unlikely that Lionel Messi will feature in the club`s La Liga opener which will be played against Athletic Bilbao. Messi is currently suffering from a calf strain and due to this he even missed Barcelona`s trip to the United States.
"He`s in the recovery process and I don`t know if he will be ready for the start of La Liga. It`s looking difficult," Goal.com quoted Valverde as saying.
Barcelona registered a massive 4-0 win over Napoli on Sunday in a club-friendly match. Antoine Griezmann scored his first goal for the club and Luiz Suarez scored two goals in the match. Ousmane Dembele also netted a goal in the match.
"Goalscorers are always boosted by the chances they get, by goals... it`s good for them to have a good relationship with the goal," he said.
"He had clear chances to score earlier, too. I am happy that all the forwards scored, including him (Griezmann), above all because he gives us a lot in attack with his movement. It`s positive to see how he`s playing," Valverde added.
Barcelona will play against Athletic Bilbao on August 17 and will look to get their campaign off to a winning start.