Good news for Ernesto Valverde and Barça as they reclaim an important part of the squad for what remains of the season. Samuel Umtiti returned to action in the 4-2 win over Sevilla in the Sánchez Pizjuán and showed himself to be back to full fitness at a crucial time for the blaugranes with two ‘Clásicos’ coming up against Real Madrid and the return leg of the Champions League last 16 tie against Lyon.
The Barça centre back had not played since appearing against Atlético Madrid at the Wanda Metropolitano on 24 November last year. 91 days later he made his return against Sevilla.
The World Cup winner with France played all 90 minutes of the come from behind victory against the Andalusians and appeared comfortable in one of the most difficult away games left for Barça this season.
In Umtiti’s absence, coach Ernesto Valverde has used the pairing of Piqué and Lenglet most. However, just one booking away from missing next week’s league trip to Real Madrid, the Frenchman gave way to his countryman for the game in the Sánchez Pizjuán. Right now, the Barça coach has five centre backs to choose from (Piqué, Lenglet, Umtiti, Murillo and Todibo) with Thomas Vermaelen also to come back from injury.