Barcelona have been given a welcome injury boost ahead of their clash with Villarreal, but it may not make much difference.
Being the start of the season, Barca are in pretty good condition ahead of their arrival in Castellon this Sunday.
Ronald Araujo is out with a muscular strain, but the Blaugrana are now all good aside from the Uruguayan, and that’s thanks to the return of new signing Iñigo Martínez.
Martinez joined for free from Athletic Club over the summer, where he had missed his last 26 games with a foot injury.
But he has now returned to full fitness, completing all the normal training with his teammates on Wednesday havign been training alone for the most part.
But that doesn’t mean Martinez can play against Villarreal this Sunday. That’s because Barca’s ongoing financial issues meant they had to prioritise the registration of Ilkay Gundogan with La Liga, leaving Martinez unregistered.
The situation has led to talk of Martinez leaving Barca after less than two months, with his representatives making it clear that he will want out if he cannot be registered.
While Martinez’s return will be a boost, the benefit may not be felt until the Blaugrana can offload other players and create the salary space to register him to their La Liga squad.
That could yet happen before Sunday, but it hasn’t happened just yet.
As an aside, Barcelona have confirmed they will wear their white away shirt against Villarreal on Sunday.