Barcelona: Braithwaite straight into squad for Eibar game
Barcelona's new €18 million arrival from Leganés has been included in Quique Setién's squad for Saturday's game against Eibar at Camp Nou.
Quique Setién has put new signing Martin Braithwaite straight into the Barcelona squad to face Eibar at Camp Nou on Saturday, where the Denmark international could make his debut for the reigning champions despite having just one training session with his teammates under his belt.
Braithwaite arrived at Camp Nou on Friday after completing a move to Barça from Leganés due to the Catalans being granted permission to make an emergency signing due to long-term injuries to Luis Suárez and Ousmane Dembélé. The loophole – which does not include a provision for the Cucumber Growers to sign a replacement for their departed top scorer despite being 19th in the table – has been met with incredulity at Butarque and beyond. Braithwaite signed a four-and-a-half year deal at Camp Nou but will be available for only 14 Liga games (he is ineligible for the Champions League) and it remains to be seen where he will be when the 2020-21 season begins.
In the meantime, Setién will be relieved to have another player available after naming squads featuring just 14 and 15 senior fit players in Barça’s last two games, the addition for the 2-1 victory over Getafe least weekend being back-up keeper Neto.
Jordi Alba’s injury has left Setién short at left back - where Junior Firpó will deputise after an excellent showing against Geta – leading to a first senior call-up for Barcelona B full back Sergio Akieme.
Another concern for Setién is in the heart of defence, where both Clément Lenglet and Samuel Umtiti are a caution away from being suspended for the Clásico.
Barcelona squad for Eibar
Ter Stegen, Neto, Semedo, Sergi Roberto, Piqué, Lenglet, Umtiti, Junior, Sergio Busquets, Arthur, Rakitic, Arturo Vidal, De Jong, Griezmann, Messi, Braithwaite, Fati, Akieme.