Lionel Messi, Luis Suarez and Neymar made their long-awaited return to Barcelona training sessions on Friday morning (31 April) after completing their international commitments. The five-time Ballon d'Or winner is ruled out for Sunday's trip to Granada but the other two members of the MSN trident should be ready to lead Luis Enrique's line-up as the Catalans search for a victory to keep the pressure up on La Liga leaders Real Madrid.
Luis Enrique has been forced to prepare for the crucial visit of the second-bottom side without 15 first-team players due to the international break. However, 12 of those players rejoined workouts during the week and on Friday the boss finally had all his charges back following the late return of the MSN.
"FC Barcelona's training session on Friday saw the return of Luis Suárez, Neymar and Messi from international duty," the club confirmed. "The return of the MSN means all of the players who were away on international duty over the past two weeks have returned. Barça B youngster Aleñá also trained with the group."
The Barcelona boss was hit by new concerns over the international break after Arda Turan joined Aleix Vidal in the treatment room for the next three weeks thanks to a groin injury sustained while paying for Turkey.
The Catalans secured a 4-2 win over Valencia in their last encounter before the break to stay in second, two points behind Real Madrid – who still have a game in hand. But Messi, who scored a brace against Los Che, will be unavailable to face Granada after being booked during that game.
Some reports in Spain suggest Luis Enrique could return to his original 4-3-3 formation to cope without Messi as Barcelona cannot afford to drop more points if they want to keep their title hopes alive.
The coming month of April is expected to play a crucial role in that fight Real Madrid as they face seven La Liga games in the space of 30 days, including a trip to the Spanish capital for the second El Clasico of the campaign on 23 April.