Barcelona centre-back Javier Mascherano could miss the visit of Eibar on Sunday (21 May) after suffering a thigh injury just before the weekend's 4-1 victory over Las Palmas.
The news is a fresh setback for Luis Enrique as the Catalans will need to secure the three points in their last La Liga game of the campaign to keep alive their hope to beat Real Madrid for the title.
Mascherano, 32, was expected to start at Las Palmas but pulled out from the line-up at the very last minute after suffering a problem in the warm-up.
Luis Enrique confirmed his concerns after the game and subsequent medical test underwent on Monday morning have confirmed the blow – only six days before their final La Liga game of the season against Eibar.
"Javier Mascherano missed the game against Las Palmas after pulling up during the warm up in the Estadio Gran Canaria. Tests carried out on Monday confirm that the Argentine has a slight injury to his right thigh. His recovery will dictate when he can return," Barcelona have confirmed in the club website.
Mascherano's last minute injury at Las Palmas left Luis Enrique with a big headache to form his back-line as Gerard Pique and Jeremy Mathieu had also failed to make the trip to the Canary Island due to illness and injury respectively. Furthermore, the boss neither had any specialist right-back in his squad as Sergi Roberto was suspended and long-term casualty Aleix Vidal remains on the side-lines.
21-year-old Marlon had to step up from the second team to partner Samuel Umtitil in the heart of the defence while Lucas Digne covered the right flank of the defence despite being a left-back.
Barcelona still managed to secure a comfortable 4-1 victory over Las Palmas to keep the pressure on Real Madrid in the race for La Liga title, remaining equal on points with Los Blancos ahead of their last game against Eibar.
Yet, Real Madrid have a game in hand to play so will lift the trophy if they secure four points in their last two visits to Celta Vigo (on Wednesday 17 may) and Malaga (Sunday 21 May).
Sergi Roberto will be back to face Eibar on Sunday following his suspension while Pique could also return after on Sunday morning Barcelona confirmed that he had been released from the hospital to continue his rehabilitation from illness at home.
However, Mascherano's availability for the game with the Basque side is now under question following his latest blow. Luis Enrique could have Pique and Umtiti to cover his potential absence on Sunday but will be hoping to recover the Argentinian in time for the Copa del Rey final against Alaves on 21 May.
Nevertheless, Sergi Roberto is out for that game due to another suspension and the versatile Mascherano is expected to cover the right-back if he is fit.