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Suarez suffers injury setback in surprise Barcelona defeat

The Uruguayan striker looks set for a stint on the sidelines after failing to last 45 minutes on Saturday

Luis Suarez will undergo tests on his return to Barcelona after injuring his right calf during his side’s shock 3-1 La Liga defeat to Levante.

The striker had to be replaced shortly before half-time in Saturday’s match and Barca will make checks on the 32-year-old to “determine the exact extent of the discomfort”.

Suarez appeared to be troubled by a foul from Carlos Clerc midway through the first half and, having tried to play on, was replaced by Carles Perez just after Lionel Messi’s penalty had put Barca in front.

He watched on as Ernesto Valverde’s men fell apart in the second half, three goals in the space of seven minutes condemning them to a third away defeat of the league season. 

The Uruguay international missed a month of action earlier in the season after injuring the same calf in another Barca defeat against Athletic Bilbao.

Suarez has scored six league goals since making his return to action on September 14 but could now face some further time out with matches against Slavia Prague and Celta Vigo to come before the next international break.

“It’s always a problem when you have to change a player in the first half,” Valverde said after the match.

“We would have preferred Luis to have been on the pitch but now is not the moment to start thinking about that. We’re hoping it’s nothing serious, but it’s a setback.”

Despite the disappointing defeat, the Catalans remain first in La Liga with both Atletico Madrid and Real Madrid held to draws on Saturday. 

Having lead after 45 minutes against Levante, Valverde was left to rue the way in which his side allowed victory turn into a loss. 

“It seemed that we had it under control and it was not like that,” he said.

“In the second half we did not dominate the game nor did we put them in danger but they made two plays and bounced back, the third goal hurt us, just like the goal that was disallowed.

“We must accept that we did not do too much either. Our intention was to score the second goal but we did not generate enough attack game.

“I looked more at the feeling of the second half, when we lacked game despite having the structure to reach the top with greater clarity, the match was unstable because the advantage in the scoreboard was short and we couldn’t think the game was closed.”

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