Barcelona Receive Bad News on Araujo’s Ankle Injury

Ronald Araujo


Barcelona have been handed some bad news on Ronald Araujo’s ankle injury with the center-back now expected to miss key games against Sevilla in the Copa del Rey semi-finals and Paris Saint-Germain in the Champions League.

Araujo has joined fellow defenders Gerard Pique and Sergi Roberto on the injured list after limping out of Sunday’s 3-2 win over Real Betis with a sprained ankle. Barcelona offered an update on the center-back after carrying out tests on his injury after the game.

Barcelona fear Araujo will be out of action for at least three weeks with his ankle injury, according to Catalunya Radio. The 21-year-old will therefore miss Wednesday’s trip to Sevilla on Wednesday for the first leg of the Copa del Rey semi-final.

The Uruguay international is also expected to miss the first leg of Barca’s Champions League last-16 tie against Paris Saint-Germain at the Camp Nou on February 16 and is also a doubt for the return on March 10.

Javier Miguel at AS reports that Araujo has suffered a “grade two sprain of the anterior syndesmosis of the left ankle” and adds that Pique is not expected to return to action “for another three weeks.”

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Koeman’s Options For Sevilla

Araujo’s injury leaves manager Ronald Koeman seriously short of options for the trip to Sevilla with Samuel Umtiti, Clement Lenglet, and Oscar Mingueza the only fit center-backs. Yet Mingueza may also be needed at right-back with Roberto out with a recurrence of a thigh problem and Sergino Dest also struggling physically.

The USMNT star was named on the bench against Real Betis, but Koeman explained after the match he did not bring the defender because he still has some injury problems, as reported by Marca. The Duch coach explained, “I like to have a right-footer and a left-footer as a pair of central defenders and Dest had discomfort yesterday and wasn’t ready to play so long, so we went for Frenkie.”

Midfielder Frenkie de Jong did come on and replace Araujo and is another option to play in central defense. However, Barcelona would then miss the 23-year-old’s influence in midfield. De Jong has flourished recently with five goals and two assists since the turn of the year.

Sevilla Also Hit By Injury

Sevilla have also been hit an injury blow ahead of Wednesday’s semi-final. Midfielder Lucas Ocampos was forced off in his team’s 3-0 win over Getafe with an ankle injury. The club have since confirmed the nature of his injury.

Ocampos now looks certain to miss the visit of the Catalan giants and could be replaced in the starting XI by new signing Papu Gomes. The injury will be a blow to the hosts with Ocampos in good form having scored twice in Sevilla’s last three games.

According to Ines Sanchez at Sport, the Sevilla midfielder is expected to miss between three and six weeks with the problem, meaning he may also sit out the second leg too on March 3.

Both teams head into the semi-final in good form. Barca’s win over Real Betis on Sunday made it 11 games unbeaten in La Liga and was the team’s sixth consecutive league win.

Meanwhile, Sevilla made it seven wins in a row in all competitions by beating Getafe on Saturday and have not been beaten at home since Real Madrid won 1-0 in La Liga on December 5.

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