Barcelona have offered a positive update on key center-back Ronald Araujo after the Uruguay international was forced off with a knee injury during the team’s hard-fought 1-0 win over Real Sociedad.
Araujo was replaced after 55 minutes of the win at the Reale Arena after picking up a problem and asking to be replaced. The defender had returned to the starting XI after missing the defeat to Cadiz because of suspension.
Barcelona have now offered an update on Araujo and have confirmed the center-back has not suffered an injury. A statement on the club’s website read, “Additionally, tests on Friday morning have revealed the good news that Ronald Araujo does not have an injury in his right knee despite having to come off in the 55th of Thursday’s game.”
The news will be a huge boost to Xavi and his side as Araujo has been a key player in central defense this season. Xavi also has other injury concerns in his backline ahead of the team’s next game against Rayo Vallecano on Sunday, April 24.
Gerard Pique and Dani Alves were also taken off against Real Sociedad after picking up knocks, while Jordi Alba played the entire match but did appear to be struggling physically in the second half.
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Xavi Talks Barcelona Injuries
Barcelona coach Xavi admitted his team are having a tough time after seeing his defenders pick up injuries at the Reale Arena. The coach told reporters after the match that the schedule and his desire to press opponents is asking a lot of his players, as reported by Marca.
“Jordi, Ronald, Pique… we’re suffering a lot, there is a lot of fatigue and the schedule is really demanding. I try to press for 90 minutes, but we are suffering, it’s a reality,” he said. “It’s because of a change in the model of our game, this hasn’t been done for a long time. Physically it is showing, but the effort of our players is spectacular.”
Thursday’s win over Real Sociedad saw Barca return to winning ways after back-to-back home defeats to Eintracht Frankfurt in the Europa League and Cadiz in La Liga. The Catalans are back in second place in the table, level on points with Sevilla but with a game in hand on the Andalusians.
Xavi ‘Not Satisfied’ Despite Win
Xavi also admitted he was not too happy with his team’s performance despite the fact the Catalans took home all three points. Real Sociedad missed several good chances to score and Xavi called on his side to improve.
“I am satisfied with the three points, it’s a vital victory for the future of the team and the club,” he added. “I’m not satisfied with the game. We suffered in the second half. We have to be honest and self-critical. We haven’t played well and we need to improve.”
Barca face another tough test against Rayo at the Camp Nou next. Andoni Iraola’s team are down in 14th place in the table but shocked Barca earlier in the summer, winning 1-0 at Vallecas on October 2021.