Messi trains apart as Barcelona put through their paces at Camp Nou

Lionel Messi was back training on Saturday, although he did not join the session with his Barcelona team-mates.

Messi had missed the Friday session at the club’s Joan Gamper Football City and Barcelona said “the captain has a small muscle contraction in the quadriceps of his right leg`’’.

On Saturday, he was out on the Camp Nou pitch, but trained with Nelson Semedo, who has a slight knee problem, and not with the rest of the team.

Barcelona are hopeful he will be fit for Saturday’s visit to Mallorca when the team play the first of their remaining 11 matches in La Liga.

They have a two-point lead over second placed Real Madrid.

It was also widely reported in Spanish media on Saturday that on Wednesday of the coming week, a clause in Messi’s contract, that allows him to leave the club on a free transfer this summer, expires.

According to the reports, Messi had to inform the club by June 10 if he wanted to exercise the clause, and the fact that he has not done so means he will be at Barcelona at least into the final year of his contract which runs until 2021.

Barcelona return to action from the coronavirus-enforced suspension away to Mallorca on June 13.

They lead La Liga by two points from arch-rivals Real Madrid with 11 games remaining. (dpa/NAN)