Ansu setback as ‘handbrake’ put on Barcelona star’s return

Robin Bairner
Fears voiced for the long-term fitness of Barcelona star Ansu Fati

Ansu Fati will have to wait for his Barcelona return after injury, dealing a further blow to the embattled Primera Division side.

Ansu, who is one of world football’s brightest young talents at 18 years old, has not played for Barca since November 2020, with the youngster having suffered numerous setbacks on his pathway back to action.

It was expected that he might only miss four months but his recovery has taken far longer than anticipated – and it seems there has been another delay.

AS reports that Ansu will not be able to feature against Granada on 20 September as was hoped, with the youngster now eyeing a possible return to action in October.

It is stated that the doctors and coaches at the club have elected to “put the handbrake” on the player’s return to competitive football due to a slowdown in his rehabilitation in recent days.

Indeed, it had been hoped that Ansu might get some minutes in the friendly match with El Prat, but he was not available for that clash.

The transfer chain reaction started by Ansu Fati’s injury

Ansu, who has assumed the mantle of the No.10 jersey from the departed Lionel Messi, could have to wait as much as another month to take part in a match for Barcelona, with the fixtures after the October international break slated as a suitable time for him to return.

It means that he will miss significant fixtures against the likes of Bayern Munich, Benfica and Atletico Madrid, but Barca are determined to protect the long-term future of their gem and will only allow him to take to the field when he is absolutely ready.

At the moment, 17 October for a fixture against Valencia is being eyed as the possible return date for Ansu, who by that stage will have missed close to a year of action for Barcelona.

Why Ansu’s absence is such a big deal

Ansu is expected to be a big player for Barcelona this season after scoring five goals and laying on four more in 10 outings last season.

Since then, Barca’s squad has not been strengthened in the manner they would have wished due to financial problems. Indeed, their attacking line has lost two starters in Antoine Griezmann and Lionel Messi.

As such, squad depth is thin offensively and Ansu was expected to take on even more importance this season. Barcelona are, therefore, missing a probable starter.