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Barca fitness nightmare as Dembele is ruled out for five weeks

BARCELONA are facing a potential fitness nightmare as Ousmane Dembele has become the latest star to join the club's growing injury list.

The Catalans revealed that the 22-year-old is expected to be sidelined for five weeks after picking up a hamstring strain in their La Liga defeat against Athletic Bilbao on Friday.

It is the latest setback for the French international, who has been plagued by similar problems since his £138million move from Borussia Dortmund.

Luis Suarez was also forced off in Barca's 1-0 loss in the Spanish league opener with a calf issue- a similar injury that talisman Lionel Messi suffered during pre-season.

Ernesto Valverde is now staring at the prospect of having all three first-team players unavailable to him for their return to Camp Nou against Real Betis.

Suarez, 32, is not thought to be back until after September's international break, after lasting just 37 minutes at the San Mames Stadium.

And Messi, 32, is yet to return to full training but could be hurried back against Betis with the Argentinian not risked against Bilbao.

Philippe Coutinho has also completed his loan move to Bayern Munich, leaving Antoine Griezmann as Barca's only fit senior attacker.

The former Athletico Madrid star deputised for Suarez in central attack on Friday, while Rafinha came on in place of the Uruguayan.

Summer signing Neto remains on the sidelines following surgery last month after he broke a bone in his wrist during training.

Philippe Coutinho is officially announced at new club Bayern Munich
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