Barcelona star Javier Mascherano could miss the coming clash with Real Sociedad on Saturday (15 April) after suffering an injury in his left calf during the midweek 3-0 defeat to Juventus. The news is a fresh blow for Barcelona as Neymar, Rafinha Alcantara and Aleix Vidal are already ruled out – while Arda Turan remains a doubt – for another key game in their battle with Real Madrid for the La Liga title.
Mascherano, 32, played the full 90 minutes during the first leg of the Champions League quarter-final, covering the absence of suspended Sergio Busquets during the first-half before returning to his role as a centre-back when Luis Enrique switched a 4-3-3 formation after half-time.
The Argentina international was unable to avoid another disappointing defeat for his side as Barcelona will need to produce another miracle comeback at the Nou Camp next week to qualify for the Champions League semi-finals.
Yet, Mascherano could even miss that game after Barcelona revealed that he ended the first-leg with a calf problem.
"The first team player Javier Mascherano has a problem with his left calf and his recovery will determine when he will be available once again," Barcelona confirmed.
The former Liverpool star is thus a major doubt for the coming La Liga clash with Real Sociedad while his availability for the following key games with Juventus and El Clasico at Real Madrid on 23 April could also be under question.
Busquets will return against Real Sociedad following his Champions League suspension but he potential absence of Mascherano means that Luis Enrique could be without five first-team players to face the Basque side.
Neymar will miss the coming three La Liga games against Real Sociedad, Real Madrid and Osasuna due to a retrospective ban while Rafinha and Vidal are also ruled out due to their respective serious injuries in the knee and the ankle.
Meanwhile, the visit of Eusebio Sacristan's side may also come too early for Arda Turan as the Turkish international is yet to play a game for Barcelona since last month due to a groin injury.
On Wednesday, Barcelona informed that the former Atletico Madrid was back in training, but added that he had not been given the medical clearance yet as he was not fully fit.
Luis Enrique's side will be in search for a much-needed victory against Real after their surprising last weekend's defeat to Malaga also dented their hopes to reignite the La Liga title, leaving them three points being Real Madrid, who still have one game in hand.