Barcelona news

Lionel Messi out 2-3 weeks

May 14, 2013
By ESPN.com news services

MADRID -- Lionel Messi's Barcelona season may be over because of a reoccurrence of a hamstring injury that has slowed him for more than a month.

Barcelona said Tuesday that the four-time FIFA player of the year will be sidelined for two-to-three weeks, which means he might not return in time for the season finale against Malaga on June 1.

Messi has 60 goals in 50 games, down from a record-setting 73 goals in 60 matches last season. He has 46 Spanish league goals, four shy of the record he set in 2011-12.

He originally strained his right hamstring April 2 in the first leg of the Champions League quarterfinal against Paris Saint-Germain and re-aggravated the injury in Sunday's 2-1 win at Atletico Madrid.

Barcelona already has clinched its fourth league title in five years. Messi could return to action for Argentina's World Cup qualifiers against Colombia on June 7 and Ecuador four days later.

"I hope we can count on Lionel, if he is here, he is welcome," Argentina coach Alejandro Sabella told Efe News Agency on Tuesday. "Lionel is the best in the world, what team would not be Messi-dependent? But if he can't play, this is a way to see how we play without him. Our days until the match vs. Colombia are few."

Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.