Barcelona,thomas vermalen,
Vermalen has made 20 appearances for Barcelona this season. Getty.

Barcelona manager Luis Enrique has received a major injury boost ahead of the decisive trip to Granada on Saturday (14 May), with long-term absentee Thomas Vermaelen receiving medical clearance. The Spanish boss is thus expected to have the majority of his squad available for the last game of the season, with Jeremy Mathieu returning to action in Sunday's victory over Espanyol following a month on the sidelines. Claudio Bravo and Sandro Ramirez are the only players currently in the treatment room at the Nou Camp.

Vermaelen suffered an elongation in the soleus of his right leg in preparation for the Champions League quarter-final against Atletico Madrid on 11 April. The former Arsenal centre-back consequently missed the defeat to Los Colchoneros, as well as the subsequent five La Liga matches, a continuation of a injury-ravaged two seasons with Barcelona.

However, Barcelona have now confirmed the Belgium international will be at Luis Enrique's disposal for the final two decisive games of the campaign, with the Catalans visiting Granada on Saturday before their Copa del Rey Final with Sevilla on 22 May.

"Thomas Vermaelen has been given the medical all-clear to return to action," Barcelona confirmed. "The Belgian has now recovered from the calf injury that has kept him out since 11 April. The international defender has played 20 matches so far this season, 15 as a starter, in his second campaign as a Barça player."

The Spanish giants arrive to their last game of the season on top of the table, one point ahead of Real Madrid, knowing that victory over Granada will see them reclaim the title ahead of Los Blancos and Atletico Madrid.

Vermalen and his Barcelona teammates began preparations for the game during a training session on Monday. The players will have two days off on Tuesday and Wednesday before returning to workouts on Thursday.


The club have also confirmed they will conduct part of their pre-season at Saint George's Park, as they did prior to the 2014-15 campaign. The Catalans will be at England's training base between 25 and 30 July, before going to Dublin for the International Champions Cup.

Barcelona will open their pre-season campaign with a game against Scottish champions Celtic in the Irish capital. They will then face Leicester City in Stockholm on 3 August before a friendly against Liverpool three days later, with the location for that match yet to be decided.