Barcelona star Sergi Roberto is expected to be back for the Champions League opener against Juventus on Tuesday night (12 September) after the versatile midfielder missed the weekend's 5-0 victory over Espanyol due to an injury. Meanwhile, Ernesto Valverde refused to confirm whether club record sign Ousmane Dembele will make the starting line-up following his late cameo appearance in the Catalan derby.
Sergi Roberto has been tipped to play an important role under Valverde this season after a number of reports during the summer claimed that the La Liga giants turned down multiple offers from the Premier League and Italy to cash in on with the Spaniard.
The 25-year-old made the starting line-up in the opening two La Liga games of the season, playing in his favoured midfield role against Real Betis before being deployed at right-back during the 2-0 victory over Alaves.
The Spaniard was also expected to face Espanyol on Saturday but was briefly sidelined after picking up an injury to his left knee in a training session.
However, the versatile midfielder was back in training on Sunday and Valverde suggests that he will be ready to return to action when Juventus visit the Nou Camp on Tuesday night.
"We think he [Sergi Roberto] is going to be available. Yesterday [on Sunday] he already trained well and we believe that he could make the squad. Let's see [how he trains] today," the Barcelona boss said just minutes before the Catalans' final workout before the game with Juventus.
Dembele, meanwhile, made his debut in the derby as a substitute after Valverde opted for Gerard Deulofeu in his starting trident alongside Lionel Messi and Luis Suarez.
The France starlet made the most of his 22 minutes on the pitch, providing Suarez with an assist to help Barcelona secure a comfortable 5-0 victory over their Catalans neighbours.
But questioned whether that performance would be enough to see him break into the starting line-up against Juventus, Valverde said: "I will resolve that [selection dilemma] tomorrow. If I start him it is because I understand that he is ready to play but Dembele is a player like the others.
"He is training well, he is every day more settled and can breakthrough into the line-up at any time. If he had come before then there would have been a greater margin but as it is, it depends on the competition. The important thing is to win so we will select the best players to do that."
Meanwhile, Valverde was also coy when asked about the uncertainty surrounding Andre Iniesta's long-term future at Barcelona.
Club president Josep Maria Bartomeu recently assured that the captain had reached "an agreement in principle" to commit his long-term future to the club. However, over the weekend, Iniesta said that he is yet to decide whether he will remain at the Nou Camp once his current contract expires at the end of the current season.
"Everybody owns his life and his future. My intention is for Andres to feel involved, to be content and to make the most of it, but not only with Andrés, also with the rest of the players," Valverde said when asked about his view on the situation.
"We will see what plan I have with him [whether to rest him in some games or not]. He is at an age [33-year-old] in which if he plays many games in a row, we have to keep that in account, but not only with him, also Busquets, Rakitic ... Let's see what happen in the following games."