Lionel Messi and Luis Suarez are ready to return to action when Barcelona visit Celtic on Wednesday night (23 November) after the attacking duo missed the weekend draw with Malaga. Young centre-back Marlon Santos has also been included in Luis Enrique's 20-man travelling squad to Glasgow but Andres Iniesta, Samuel Umtiti and Jeremy Mathieu remain out.
Messi was ruled out for the Saturday encounter with Malaga at the very last minute due to illness, with the club revealing that the Ballon D'or "was not feeling well and had vomited". Meanwhile, Suarez also missed the La Liga game due to suspension, having picked up his fifth yellow card of the campaign in the previous 2-1 victory over Sevilla.
The attacking duo were vastly missed as Arda Turan and Paco Alcacer failed to cope with their absences in a trident which only had the presence of one of the members of the MSN in Neymar. Barcelona were held to a goalless draw by a nine-men Malaga side, suffering a blow to their hopes of regaining the league title. They now sit four points behind Real Madrid only two weeks before the first El Clasico of the season to be played at the Nou Camp on 3 December.
But Messi and Suarez were back in training on Monday and now Luis Enrique has included both in his 20-man squad to visit Celtic.
This way the Barcelona boss is expected to recover his MSN trio in full on Wednesday after all three scored goals in their previous 7-0 victory over Celtic earlier this season.
However, the Champions League clash will still come too early for Iniesta, Umtiti and Mathieu. 21-year-old Marlon has thus been promoted from the second team to address the shortage of options in the back-line, with Luis Enrique having only two first-team centre-backs available in Gerard Pique and Javier Mascherano.
"Leo Messi, who was missing for the 0-0 draw with Málaga on Saturday after going down with a virus, is back in the team. So is Luis Suárez, who was suspended against the Andalusians," Barcelona confirmed. "But none of the injured trio of Andrés Iniesta, Samuel Umtiti and Jérémy Mathieu are ready in time and will be remaining in Barcelona to continue their treatment programmes. Marlon of Barça B has also been included in the party of 20 – which will need to be reduced to 18 names for inclusion in the definitive match squad."