Juventus are not targeting Eden Hazard, while Sergio Ramos looks set to wait for a new Real Madrid deal.

Hazard's future has become a talking point amid his struggles at Madrid since arriving from Chelsea in 2019.

But just where the playmaker could end up remains to be seen.

 

TOP STORY – JUVENTUS NOT INTERESTED IN HAZARD

Juventus are not interested in Real Madrid playmaker Eden Hazard for now, according to CalcioMercato.

Hazard has made just 24 LaLiga appearances for Madrid since arriving ahead of 2019-20 after battling numerous injuries.

Madrid reportedly paid €100million for the Belgium international.

 

ROUND-UP

- Sergio Ramos' future at Madrid is also uncertain. The defender is out of contract at the end of the season and is reportedly set to miss another two months after undergoing knee surgery. Marca says Ramos will still be without a contract by the time he returns, most likely in April.

- Changes are also expected at Barcelona at season's end. CalcioMercato reports Milan are interested in midfielder Philippe Coutinho, who has struggled to live up to expectations with the LaLiga giants.

- Barcelona and Arsenal are interested in bringing in Marc Overmars as sports director, according to Mundo Deportivo, with the former Netherlands international set to leave his role as Ajax director of football at season's end.

- After several impressive displays for Leicester City, the Premier League club are rushing to renew Youri Tielemans' contract, which runs until 2023, according to TodoFichajes.

Ronald Koeman expects to be without Philippe Coutinho for at least three months following surgery to repair a knee injury.

Coutinho suffered damage to the external meniscus of his left knee after coming on as a second-half substitute in Barcelona's 1-1 draw with Eibar on Tuesday at Camp Nou. 

The Brazil international was told he required an operation following further assessment and, while the club has yet to offer a timetable for his return, Koeman has confirmed it will be a lengthy absence. 

Speaking ahead of Saturday's LaLiga fixture away to Huesca, the Barca boss admitted it is a blow to lose another forward option, considering he is also without the services of Ansu Fati. 

"It's unlucky because we have so many important players out injured and Philippe will be about three months out," Koeman told the media.  

"He always has been an important player and he will be important, but now he has to recover, and I don't know when he will be 100 per cent fit.  

"An important absence. Up front, we are having some problems, of course, and I will have to see how we can solve Philippe's absence." 

Coutinho's injury will increase speculation over Barca making a move for long-time target Memphis Depay in the January transfer window. 

The Netherlands international is in the final year of his contract at Lyon and media reports in both France and Spain have suggested he could be available at a greatly reduced price, considering he can leave for free at the end of the 2020-21 season.

In the short term, Koeman will at least have Lionel Messi back for the game with Huesca, as Barcelona aim to avoid losing three successive games against newly promoted sides in the top flight for the first time in their history.

The Blaugrana were beaten by Osasuna in July towards the end of the previous season, then humbled by top-flight new boys Cadiz last month.

Philippe Coutinho will undergo knee surgery on Saturday, Barcelona have announced, as reports in Spain suggest he could be out for several months. 

The Brazil international was introduced as a 66th-minute substitute during Tuesday's disappointing 1-1 draw with Eibar at Camp Nou, but was unable to see the game out. 

On Friday, Barca confirmed the Brazil international will have an operation on the external meniscus of his left knee, after which a timetable for his return will be revealed.

A club statement read: "Philippe Coutinho will be operated on this Saturday for the injury to the external meniscus of the left knee by Dr. Joan Carles Monllau and under the supervision of the club's medical services.

"Once the surgery has been completed, further information will be provided to detail the approximate expected recovery time."

Several Spanish media outlets have reported the 28-year-old is likely to be out of action for an extended period of time, potentially not playing again until April.

Such a lengthy absence would be another blow for Barca boss Ronald Koeman, who is already without Ansu Fati, Sergi Roberto and Gerard Pique through injury.

Coutinho has made 14 appearances for Barcelona this season in all competitions, scoring three goals and providing two assists. He spent the previous season on loan at Bayern Munich, helping the German club secure a treble that included winning the Champions League.

Rumours had circulated he could leave the club in the January transfer window, but this latest setback looks to have ensured he will see out the 2020-21 campaign in Spain.

Barcelona playmaker Philippe Coutinho will undergo arthroscopic surgery to determine the severity of an injury to his left knee.

The Brazil international was introduced as a 66th-minute substitute during Tuesday's disappointing 1-1 draw with Eibar at Camp Nou but was unable to see the game out.

Initial reports suggested Coutinho could be facing a lengthy spell on the sidelines and the club confirmed on Wednesday he had damaged a lateral meniscus and will now have an exploratory operation.

A Barcelona statement read: "The tests carried out on the first team player Philippe Coutinho have shown that the midfielder has an injury to the lateral meniscus in his left knee. Treatment will necessitate arthroscopic surgery which will take place in the coming days."

A lengthy absence for Coutinho would be another blow for Barca boss Ronald Koeman, who is already without Ansu Fati, Sergi Roberto and Gerard Pique through injury.

Coutinho has made 14 appearances for Barcelona this season in all competitions, with three goals and two assists.

The draw with Eibar saw the Catalans slip to sixth in the LaLiga table, seven points adrift of joint leaders Atletico Madrid and Real Madrid.

Marcus Rashford is contracted to Manchester United until 2023.

But the Red Devils are still planning to renew Rashford's deal in Manchester.

Pay rise anyone?

 

TOP STORY – RASHFORD IN LINE FOR BUMPER DEAL

Manchester United are set to hand Marcus Rashford a lucrative new contract, according to the Daily Star.

Rashford has impressed on and off the pitch at Old Trafford since making his United debut in 2015.

The 23-year-old – contracted until 2023 – is in line to be rewarded with a bumper £300,000 deal.

 

ROUND-UP

- Diario AS reports Rennes and France sensation Eduardo Camavinga is edging closer to a transfer to LaLiga champions Real Madrid. The 18-year-old midfielder has also been linked to United and Paris Saint-Germain, but Madrid – also a possible destination for Juventus target Paul Pogba – are tipped to prise the Frenchman to the Spanish capital. 

Barcelona are willing to sell Philippe Coutinho, claims ARA. It comes amid the club's financial issues due to the coronavirus pandemic.

- Corriere dello Sport says Fiorentina want Napoli outcast and soon-to-be free agent Arkadiusz Milik. The Poland international has also been linked to Roma, Atletico Madrid and Juventus.

- Parma's Gervinho and Udinese star Rodrigo De Paul are among the players wanted by Inter, according to Tuttosport.

Ronald Koeman has once again criticised the scheduling of Barcelona's LaLiga fixtures after losing Ousmane Dembele to injury.

Dembele suffered an "elongation" in the hamstring of his right leg in Saturday's 2-1 loss to Cadiz and is facing another spell on the sidelines.

The France international joins a growing list of injured players at Barca, with Gerard Pique, Ansu Fati, Sergi Roberto and Samuel Umtiti also ruled out.

Koeman is unsure how long the injury-plagued Dembele will be out but suggested this latest setback would have been avoided if his side were given a different kick-off slot.

"It's a shame to lose another player to injury," he said at a news conference ahead of Tuesday's Champions League clash with Juventus.

"He noticed something in the second half when he came on. He thought it was nothing but it's a step back considering his history. It's one more reason why I complain about the match schedules.

"I don't know who sets the match schedules, but if you play in Europe on Tuesday, thinking about the Spanish teams, you don't get back from the prior until four in the morning.

"We have played five matches away from home at nine in the night. If you play Wednesday that gives you a day extra to recover, but not when you play on Tuesday."

Barca are through to the last 16 of the Champions League and will seal top spot in Group G if they avoid a three-goal loss, or any two-goal margin of defeat other than 2-0, against Juve.

A victory for the Catalan giants would make it just the eighth instance of a side winning all six group matches, Barca having previously achieved the feat once before in 2002-03.

But they have struggled domestically, a return of 14 points from 10 LaLiga games their lowest tally since 1987-88, and Koeman takes full responsibility for the poor return.

"It is always down to the coach," he said. "He makes the decisions and with his staff decides the team.

"We have to analyse the defeats. It is difficult losing to Cadiz compared to Atletico [Madrid]. You have to look at how they marked us, how we attacked.

"If I am annoyed after a game I will let the players know. I told them yesterday before training that we cannot accept the way we played in certain games.

"What we discuss stays in the dressing room, but there are things we need to improve on. There is not much time to train but we can still seek maximum performance.

"In general, we are a team that creates five or six clear chances every game. We have to find a balance to take advantage of this, while making fewer mistakes."

Tuesday's visit of Juventus could be the sixth occasion that Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo have met in the Champions League, and their first such meeting since May 2011.

Messi is 3-0 up on Ronaldo in terms of goals in those previous fixtures, but he has been left out of Barca's squad for their past two European matches.

Koeman did not confirm whether Messi would feature against Juve but acknowledged Barca will have to be alert to keep Ronaldo quiet.

"The most important thing is to fight for first place and Cristiano is still one of the best around," Koeman said. "He works every day to stay at the top.

"We have to respect him and must try to keep hold of the ball so he cannot hurt us.

"It is great that both players have maintained this level of performance for 15 years. For me they have been the two best players in the world in recent years.

"Their characteristics are very different but both are very capable of scoring goals, hat-tricks, winning titles - they have both done and won many things."

Philippe Coutinho accepts his performances for Barcelona have fallen short of expectations but insists he is mentally stronger than before.

Signed from Liverpool in 2018 in a deal potentially worth €160million (£142m), the Brazil international has not had the desired impact at Camp Nou.

Coutinho, who has scored 15 goals and provided nine assists in 60 LaLiga appearances, spent last season on loan at Bayern Munich and won the treble under Hansi Flick.

He returned to Barca for 2019-20 and has been directly involved in four goals in eight league outings, but the Catalans' inconsistent form has not helped him to thrive.

Coutinho started Saturday's shock 2-1 loss at Cadiz but managed only one shot and one key pass before being substituted for Ousmane Dembele at half-time.

With Dembele having suffered another hamstring injury, Coutinho is likely to start on Tuesday against Juventus as Barca look to secure top spot in their group.

While he accepts Barca are going through a transition period and that his own form has not been as hoped, Coutinho says he has become mentally and physically more robust.

"I know my form hasn't been what everyone expected," said the 28-year-old. "Barca have the attention of everyone and what I can say is that I've worked a lot more mentally to be well, and nowadays, I consider myself stronger in that sense.

"We're in a renewal process. We've changed coach, the players... all this forms part of the renewal process. You have to be patient and do everything to make it that things work as soon as possible.

"Whenever you lose an important game, the atmosphere is one of frustration. But I see everyone wanting to change this moment we're going through. Mentally, I'm stronger than before and the team looks eager to change this.

"I started to work in a different way. It was necessary to have more strength. And mentally, it's the same. There are things that are making me stronger and, physically and mentally, I'm doing a better job."

Barca face Juventus knowing they will finish top of the group if they avoid losing by three goals or more, or by a two-goal margin other than 2-0.

Lionel Messi will miss a second successive Champions League match after Ronald Koeman took the opportunity to rest him once again.

Messi's absence is not an issue Barca have often had to deal with down the years in the Champions League, particularly in recent times – the 4-0 win over Dynamo Kiev last time out was only the fourth in 43 matches in the competition that he has not featured in.

Nevertheless, one would expect Barca to have enough firepower to see off their hosts on Wednesday and they are undefeated in their previous nine Champions League games without Messi since a 2-1 loss to Ajax in November 2013.

Barca crushed the Hungarian champions 5-1 at Camp Nou in October and are already assured of a place in the next round having won all of their first four matches in Group G.

As such, Koeman wants to take every opportunity to rest his star man in what is proving a hectic season.

"I understand that it is not normal, but in the calendar this season there were two moments for Leo Messi to rest, Kiev and tomorrow, because we are already qualified," Koeman told reporters on Tuesday.

"It allows me to give opportunities to other players and the Saturday games in the league are very important. From tomorrow there is no more [chance] to rest him.

"Leo is always Leo. He is very important in our attack. When the ball reaches him, it may be that at the beginning of the season it has cost him a little [in terms of fatigue]. He may not score 30 goals per season, but he is working well and it is very important in our attack.

"He always likes to play and it's good that he has this mentality, but I spoke with him and asked him, but the final decision is up to the coach.

"I wanted to give him rest in Kiev and tomorrow. For the rest of the season he may not get any more rest because we play every three days."

Marc-Andre ter Stegen and Philippe Coutinho are two others who have been afforded a rest and left out of the travelling party.

Messi is expected to return for Barca's final group match next week against Juventus and long-time rival Cristiano Ronaldo.

Lionel Messi paid tribute to Diego Maradona on Sunday with a goal celebration that came as a "beautiful surprise" to his Barcelona team-mates.

Former Barca and Argentina great Maradona died on Wednesday at the age of 60 and has been honoured before all LaLiga matches over the weekend.

Messi scored his side's fourth goal in the 4-0 win over Osasuna and afterwards removed his Barca shirt to reveal a Newell's Old Boys jersey emblazoned with Maradona's famous number 10.

He then pointedly saluted the sky in honour of his compatriot, who spent a season at Newell's - the club where Messi began his youth career.

Antoine Griezmann and Philippe Coutinho each got a goal in Barca's comfortable victory, along with striker Martin Braithwaite, who opened the scoring in the first half.

They described afterwards how they were not aware of what Messi was planning on a moving day at Camp Nou, where Maradona played from 1982 to 1984.

"We lost Maradona, a global idol, we all miss him," Coutinho said.

"We didn't know what Messi had prepared to honour Maradona," added Griezmann. "It was a beautiful surprise."

Newell's responded through their English Twitter account, saying: "It's all about number 10. The best player in the world and his tribute to #D10S."

Barca's victory moved them into eighth in the table, for a few hours at least, nine points behind leaders Real Sociedad and Atletico Madrid in second.

Lautaro Martinez's future continues to dominate headlines.

Martinez was tipped to leave Inter for Barcelona at the start of the season, but a move did not materialise amid the coronavirus pandemic.

Now, Manchester City are emerging as a serious suitor.

 

TOP STORY – CITY WANT LAUTARO

Manchester City are continuing their pursuit of Inter star Lautaro Martinez, according to the Mirror.

Martinez has been heavily linked with LaLiga giants Barcelona, as well as Real Madrid and City, where Pep Guardiola is eyeing a long-term replacement for Sergio Aguero.

The Argentina international has made his demands clear to Inter, who are hoping to re-sign Martinez.

 

ROUND-UP

Barca are open to the idea of selling Ousmane Dembele, says Mundo Deportivo. Dembele was wanted by Manchester United prior to the previous transfer window closing and Barca are reportedly aware of contacts between the France international and the Premier League side.

Arsenal are ready to part with club-record signing Nicolas Pepe, reports the Daily Star. Unconvinced about the Ivory Coast international, the Gunners are even reportedly open to a loan move amid links to Milan.

- The Sun claims Leeds United want Sevilla boss Julen Lopetegui once fan favourite Marcelo Bielsa leaves Elland Road.

- The Mirror claims United want to sign former defender Jonny Evans from Leicester City. Evans – who won three Premier League titles at Old Trafford – left United for West Brom in 2015 before joining Leicester in 2018.

- Barca have offered Philippe Coutinho to Juventus, according to Calciomercato. Barca need to raise funds as they look to recruit Lyon captain Memphis Depay and City defender Eric Garcia.

Lionel Messi has every right to be "p****d off" at being questioned over his relationship with Antoine Griezmann, according to Barcelona head coach Ronald Koeman.

Griezmann's former representative Eric Olhats last week suggested the Barca captain has played a significant role in the France star's struggles at Camp Nou.

Messi was asked about the remarks after landing at El Prat Airport on Wednesday, having represented Argentina in a couple of World Cup qualifiers over the international break.

"I'm a little tired of always being the problem for everything at the club," he said.

Messi's comments come at a time when he continues to be linked with a move away from Barca, but Koeman insisted it is not fair on his player to be constantly questioned.

"I can understand that Leo is p****d off. You have to respect Leo more," he said at a news conference ahead of Saturday's LaLiga clash with Atletico Madrid.

"After such a long trip and asking about Antoine is disrespectful. It may be your intention to create a controversy. 

"I have never seen any confrontation between the two on the field, training ground or in the locker room. 

"I am not in favour of giving importance to Olhats because he stopped being Griezmann's agent years ago. What he said is b******t."

Koeman added: "I have to defend Leo because after 15 hours of travel, they do a one-hour check, and then you find a lot of press asking you a lot of questions."

Messi failed in an effort to walk away from Barca in August as the validity of his release clause was questioned due to last season being prolonged by the coronavirus pandemic.

Koeman reiterated he is hopeful the six-time Ballon d'Or winner will stay on beyond this season but conceded the decision is out of his hands.

"He still has a year on his contract. In my opinion he has to stay here," he said. "But I am not the person who has to convince him. Nobody knows what may happen in the future.

"It is incredible what he has done for this club. He is the person who will make a decision about his future."

The comments made by Olhats placed Griezmann's role at Barcelona firmly back in the spotlight, the forward having failed to make the desired impact since arriving in July 2019.

Griezmann has two goals and one assist in nine appearances this term and missed a penalty in Barca's last outing before the international break.

However, ahead of this weekend's trip to Griezmann's former club Atletico, Koeman reiterated he has no concerns over the Frenchman's form.

"No, because I see him concentrating, working and trying to help win the games," he said.

Philippe Coutinho is back in Barca's squad for the showdown at the Wanda Metropolitano, coinciding with the loss of Ansu Fati to a knee injury for the next four months.

"Philippe is okay," Koeman added. "He has been training for almost a week now and we have to talk to the physios about the best time for him to enter the match - from the start or from the bench.

"He is not a winger who likes to go deep; he plays more as an offensive midfielder. He is a great player and it is always good to have him because he is versatile."

Barcelona star Philippe Coutinho will not return to fitness before the November international break, according to the Brazil national team.

Coutinho suffered a hamstring injury in Saturday's defeat to Real Madrid despite completing the full game at Camp Nou.

Barca said a timescale for the former Liverpool man's return "depends on how the injury evolves", but Brazil's doctors have also now assessed the player.

Doctor Rodrigo Lasmar believes "there is not enough time for the recovery of the player for his participation in the next two rounds of [2022 World Cup] qualifiers", a statement read.

Brazil have therefore called up Lyon's Lucas Paqueta in his place for the fixtures against Venezuela and Uruguay on November 13 and 17.

Should Coutinho be available for Barca again following the break, he would make his return against Atletico Madrid almost a month on from the initial issue.

Coutinho is set to be joined in missing Brazil's qualifiers by Liverpool's Fabinho.

The midfielder, who has been playing in defence for the Reds since Virgil van Dijk's injury, sustained a hamstring problem in Tuesday's Champions League win over Midtjylland.

Liverpool were waiting for a scan on the injury on Wednesday, but Jurgen Klopp suggested Fabinho's absence would not represent a major blow for Brazil, as he has earned just 12 caps for his country and started on five occasions.

"I'm not sure if Tite's too worried because he plays him never, so he will probably now not sit on the bench for the next [two] international games," Klopp said.

Josep Maria Bartomeu's ultimately unpopular tenure as Barcelona president has finally come to an end after the club's entire board resigned.

Barca won the treble in his first full season in charge in 2014-15, led by the thrilling front three of Lionel Messi, Neymar and Luis Suarez.

But it seems unlikely Bartomeu's time as the top man at Camp Nou will be remembered for that success.

Barca subsequently suffered humiliation after humiliation in the Champions League, reaching a remarkable crescendo with August's 8-2 quarter-final demolition at the hands of eventual champions Bayern Munich.

However, it was Bartomeu's failings in the transfer market that helped put the Catalan giants in such a position.

While Neymar left and then Lionel Messi pushed for a move of his own, Barca recruited in disappointing if often spectacular fashion.

Not all of Bartomeu's signings were poor, but we look at the 10 permanent deals that defined his reign.

 

Marc-Andre ter Stegen – €12m from Borussia Monchengladbach

That stunning first season of on-field triumphs came after an excellent summer transfer window, although Ter Stegen was restricted to Champions League action initially as fellow new man Claudio Bravo started in LaLiga. Germany international Ter Stegen quickly proved his worth in the 2014-15 European campaign, keeping a joint-high six clean sheets courtesy of 31 saves, while trailing only Manuel Neuer for successful passes (245) and passing accuracy (80 per cent) among goalkeepers.

Ivan Rakitic – €18m from Sevilla

Another to join in the €165m spending spree of 2014, Rakitic only departed this year to return to Sevilla. The midfielder was a consistent performer throughout his time at Camp Nou, yet perhaps his best season was reserved for his first 12 months at Barca. He scored five times in LaLiga and laid on seven assists – the most in his Barca career – from 35 chances created.

Luis Suarez – €81m from Liverpool

The most important and surely best signing of Bartomeu's tenure followed in that same transfer window as Barca prised Suarez from Liverpool after their failed Premier League title bid in which he netted 31 times. That same scoring form continued in LaLiga, where Suarez struck up a great partnership and friendship with Messi. The Uruguay international left for Atletico Madrid prior to the 2020-21 campaign – a key factor in the ongoing Barca crisis – having scored 198 goals for the club, trailing only Messi and Cesar Rodriguez. Suarez scored a sensational 40 LaLiga goals in 2015-16, along with 16 assists and 23 tackles, typifying his work rate. All three were high marks for his Barca career.

Thomas Vermaelen – €18m from Arsenal

Along with Ter Stegen, Rakitic and Suarez, though, came a signing that would prove more in keeping with much of the rest of the work done under Bartomeu. Vermaelen cost a decent fee, was scarcely fit and rarely looked like troubling the starting XI when he was. He made just 26 LaLiga starts in five years at Barca.

Andre Gomes – €35m from Valencia

After making just two signings in 2015-16, Barca were busy in the market again the following campaign. A combination of form and fitness meant few if any of the 2016-17 signings could be considered successes, but Gomes was perhaps the worst. Signed for a fee that could have risen to €55m, he scored three goals and provided one assist in the league across two seasons before leaving for Everton.

Ousmane Dembele – €105m from Borussia Dortmund

Barca's dealings had been questionable even before they sold Neymar, but the money brought in for the Brazilian then appeared to burn a hole in the pocket of Bartomeu, who proceeded to spend it in a series of unsuccessful ways. Dembele seemed a reasonable enough replacement for Neymar but injuries disrupted his progress. He has supplied just 12 goals and 11 assists in the league since signing, although he remains at Camp Nou.

Philippe Coutinho – €120m from Liverpool

Barca tried for Coutinho when Neymar first left and returned for the Liverpool star again in January. Yet the Blaugrana did not appear to have a role made for the playmaker, sticking to a 4-3-3 formation that forced him out wide or deep in the midfield. Another still at Barca, a reasonable enough initial return of eight goals and five assists from 29 chances created in the remainder of his first season did not provide a platform for success. He spent last season on loan at Bayern and scored twice in the humbling of his parent club.

Malcom – €41m from Bordeaux

As Barca went big again in 2018-19, there appeared to be a third attempt at replacing Neymar. Malcom was just 21 and should have been one for the future but did not last long. A single season brought one goal and two assists before he left for Zenit.

Antoine Griezmann – €120m from Atletico Madrid

Project replace Neymar: part four. With attempts to bring the PSG number 10 himself back to Barca failing, a long-awaited move for Griezmann was instead completed. A World Cup winner who led the line for one of Barca's biggest domestic rivals, Griezmann certainly had the pedigree but has so far struggled to work with Messi in attack. The pair are yet to create a single chance for one another in LaLiga this season and have combined on just 23 passes.

Martin Braithwaite – €18m from Leganes

Braithwaite is evidently delighted to be at Barca, but perhaps that is the problem. It is a stunning indictment of Bartomeu's tenure that Ronald Koeman had to turn to the Denmark international in a bid to rescue last week's Clasico defeat. He now wears the number nine shirt that belonged to Suarez.

Barcelona have announced Philippe Coutinho suffered a hamstring injury during Saturday's Clasico defeat to Real Madrid.

The Brazil international played the full game as Madrid prevailed 3-1 at Camp Nou, leaving Barca languishing in the bottom half of the table.

Coutinho completed 84 per cent of his passes but failed to create a chance in the game, while just one of his five shots ended up being on target.

He has started four of the five LaLiga games played so far in Ronald Koeman's reign, including scoring Barcelona's goal in the 1-1 draw with Sevilla on October 4. 

However, the 28-year-old – who spent the 2019-20 season on loan at Bayern Munich, helping them secure a treble – is set for a spell on the sidelines, although Barca did not reveal how long he will be out.

"Tests on Sunday morning have revealed that Philippe Coutinho has a left biceps femoris (hamstring) injury," a short statement from the club read.

"Exactly how long that means he will be out of action depends on how the injury evolves.

Coutinho's injury is a blow ahead of a midweek trip to Turin for a crucial Champions League clash with Group G rivals Juventus.

Barca also have a European game against Dynamo Kiev, as well as meetings with Deportivo Alaves and Real Betis in the league, before the November international break.

Lionel Messi and Ansu Fati were on target as Barcelona opened their Champions League campaign with a thumping 5-1 win over Ferencvaros at Camp Nou on Tuesday, although Gerard Pique was dismissed for the hosts.

Ronald Koeman's side suffered a surprise 1-0 defeat to Getafe in LaLiga at the weekend and looked shaky in the early stages against their Hungarian opponents, who were making their first appearance in the Champions League group stages for 25 years.

Messi's penalty shortly before the half-hour mark settled any nerves, though, while Fati doubled their advantage in the 42nd minute.

Philippe Coutinho added a third early in the second half before Ihor Kharatin pulled one back for the visitors from the penalty spot after Pique had been dismissed for bringing down Tokmac Nguen inside the area. Barca had the final say, however, substitute Pedri scoring his first goal for the club eight minutes from time and Ousmane Dembele adding a late fifth.

Ferencvaros were far from overawed in the early stages against their illustrious opponents, twice going close to taking the lead inside the opening 20 minutes.

Nguen had a fine strike ruled out for offside before Isael crashed a powerful drive against Neto's crossbar from 10 yards.

They were left to rue those close calls in the 27th minute when Messi powered home from the spot after he had been tripped in the area by Adnan Kovacevic.

It made the Argentina international the first player in Champions League history to score in 16 consecutive seasons.

Fati was denied by the outstretched leg of Denes Dibusz but then got the better of the Ferencvaros goalkeeper three minutes before the interval, steering a volley inside his left-hand post after a sublime looped pass from Frenkie de Jong.

Fati turned provider for Barca's third seven minutes after the restart, Coutinho receiving his impudent back-heeled pass before sending a deflected effort past Dibusz.

Kharatin restored some pride for the visitors 20 minutes from time after Pique clumsily hauled down Nguen as he entered the penalty area following a ball over the top.

Any hopes of a dramatic comeback were extinguished, however, as Pedri turned home from 12 yards and Dembele thundered home from Messi's pass in the final 10 minutes to seal a comfortable three points.

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