Messi On Barcelona Bench Against Tottenham

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Barcelona have only named Lionel Messi on the bench, handing Tottenham a huge boost in what is a vital Champions League clash for the English side.

Spurs go into the fixture at Camp Nou needing to at least match Inter's result at home to PSV to secure progression to the Champions League knockout phase.


Ernesto Valverde assured Inter in his pre-match news conference that Barca were going do everything they could to win the match, suggesting only Luis Suarez would be afforded a rest.

But Valverde has decided to leave his talisman Messi, who scored twice against Espanyol on Saturday, on the bench.

Arthur makes his return in midfield following a hamstring injury, while there are rare starts for Thomas Vermaelen and youngsters Carles Alena and Juan Miranda.

There are few surprises in the Tottenham team, with 21-year-old Kyle Walker-Peters starting at right-back due to injuries to Serge Aurier and Kieran Trippier.

The rest of their star players are in the starting XI, with Harry Kane, Dele Alli, Son Heung-min and Christian Eriksen all involved.