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ATLÉTICO DE MADRID

Atlético: Álvaro Morata almost certain to miss Barcelona clash

Morata se retira lesionado del Atlético-Girona. Tiene un esguince.

DANI SANCHEZ

DIARIO AS

The striker underwent tests which revealed a sprain to his right ankle. With just three days before Atlético visit Camp Nou, his chances of playing look slim.

Álvaro Morata is the latest to join Atlético's casulaty list. The striker limped out of yesterday's game against Girona and tests conducted this morning at the Clínica Universidad de Navarra detected a sprain to his right ankle. It looks highly unlikley that he will recover in time for Saturday's crucial league meeting away at Barcelona, in which Atlético have the chance to gain ground on the leaders. The injury could keep him out for up to two weeks, according to medical experts consulted by Diario AS.

Morata practically ruled out... Diego Costa, doubtful

Simeone told reporters after last night's game that Morata had been suffering twinges since the recent international break but the coach was hopeful he could shake his injury problems off. Now, Atleti's coaching staff face a serious problem forming the team's attack for the Barcelona game. Diego Costa was ruled out of the Girona game with a muscule injury - as was Thomas Lemar and now Morata is dealing with a sprained ankle.

Simeone could delve into the reserves

With three days to go before the match at Camp Nou, Simeone must find a strike partner for Griezmann - and that's not going to be easy. He has 20 players available in the squad (excluding Lucas, who now doesn't count for the coach) and three players out injured, El Cholo has just 17 players match-fit. It could mean an opportunity opening up for forwards from the youth team - Víctor Mollejo, Sergio  Camello...

Atlético's injury count this season is almost at 50 and Morata was one of the few players who has avoided physical problems. Only Oblak, Adán, Rodrigo, Thomas and Griezmann have managed to remain injury-free this season...