Barcelona defender Gerard Pique has been ruled out of his side's crucial final league game of the season against Eibar with abdominal pains. The Spain international has been struggling with a stomach issue for the last 10 days and is still "recovering and readapting" to training, according to Barca's official website.
The news comes as a blow to Luis Enrique, who is preparing to take charge of his final La Liga game as manager of the Blaugrana. The former Roma and Celta Vigo manager was expecting to welcome Pique back to the fold, having enjoyed a splendid campaign, but he will now have to make do without his strongest defender on Sunday (21 May).
"Pique has trained as normal over the last two days and if he is fine tomorrow he will be in squad," Enrique told a press conference on Saturday.
Barcelona will also have to make do without Argentine defender Javier Mascherano against Eibar, and the 'Little Boss' is also a doubt for the upcoming Copa Del Rey final with Alaves after suffering a thigh injury during the warm-up of is side's clash against Las Palmas a week ago.
Mascherano and Pique are not the only absentees for Barcelona, with Rafinha, Jeremy Mathieu and Aleix Vidal also on the sidelines. Versatile midfielder Sergi Roberto is available after serving his suspension, however.
Despite the loss of Pique, Mascherano et al, Barcelona will still hope to defeat Eibar and pip arch-rivals Real Madrid to the league title, but they are aware that Los Blancos are firmly in the driving seat. Zinedine Zidane's made light work of Celta Vigo in midweek and now need just one point to secure their first La Liga title since 2012.
Standing between Real and league glory is Malaga, who have been in good form in recent weeks, and Los Boquerones, spearheaded by former Barcelona starlet Sandro, will hope to scupper Cristiano Ronaldo and co with an unexpected victory.