Neymar misses Barca trip to Deportivo


Barcelona (AFP) – Barcelona will be without Neymar after his Champions League heroics against Paris Saint-Germain when the Spanish champions continue their quest for a third straight La Liga title at Deportivo la Coruna on Sunday.

Neymar scored twice and set up Sergi Roberto’s remarkable 95th-minute winner as Barca completed the biggest Champions League comeback of all time from a 4-0 first leg deficit in a 6-1 win.

However, the Brazilian missed training on Saturday due to a left abductor strain and hasn’t been included in Luis Enrique’s 18-man squad.

Neymar was pictured celebrating Barca’s comeback along with three-time Formula One world champion Lewis Hamilton into the early hours of Thursday morning.

Luis Enrique, though, insisted he is confident his side won’t suffer a hangover at Deportivo with the Spanish title race on a knife-edge.

“I have trust in the experience of my players to know that we have a lot at stake,” said Luis Enrique on Saturday.

Barca lead Real Madrid at the top of the table by a point, but Madrid have a game in hand.

Wednesday’s exploits have raised hopes Barca can claim a second treble in three seasons as they are heavy favourites for the Copa del Rey final against Alaves.

However, Enrique, who will leave the club at the end of the season, tried to temper expectations.

“We are aware that everything is still to be decided,” he added.

“There are eight teams left in the Champions League, three competing for La Liga and two in the Cup.

“That means we can win zero, one, two or three titles. Right now we can only concentrate on Deportivo.”

Midfielder Rafinha also misses out for Barca due to gastroenteritis.

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