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Barcelona’s Vermaelen set for two weeks out


Barcelona (AFP) – Barcelona defender Thomas Vermaelen will be out for a fortnight with the hamstring injury that forced him off in the first half in Sunday’s win at Betis, the club said on Monday.

Vermaelen pulled up having hurt his left hamstring and had to come off four minutes before half-time, with Samuel Umtiti taking his place as Barcelona went on to win 5-0.

Luis Suarez and Lionel Messi both scored twice after Ivan Rakitic put the Catalans ahead, allowing Ernesto Valverde’s side to move 11 points clear of Atletico Madrid at the top of La Liga.

Barcelona host Espanyol on Thursday in the second leg of their Copa del Rey quarter-final looking to overturn a 1-0 first-leg deficit.

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