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PHOTO: MIGUEL RUIZ-FCB

PHOTO: MIGUEL RUIZ-FCB

There was a positive start to the New Year for Pep Guardiola, as he welcomed back Iniesta, Puyol, Keita and Alves to training after, for various reasons, they'd all missed the New Year's Eve session. A total of 19 players took part in training -17 from the first team squad and 2 from Barça B - Montoya and Cuenca.

Abidal in the gym

Perhaps the most important return was that of Andres Iniesta, who was given 15 days out after his injury in the Cup game against Hospitalet just before Christmas, but who has made it back into training just 11 days after the injury. Carles Puyol, who missed the game with Catalonia with a thigh strain was also back in training, as was Seydou Keita, who trained in the gym on December 31st and Dani Alves, who has returned from his Christmas break in Brazil.

The only two fit first team squad members not in training were Leo Messi – who is due back in Barcelona today and Éric Abidal, who after recovering from his bout of flu worked out in the gym. Long term injury victims Afellay and Villa were the other squad members absent.

Today's training was the first session in preparation for Wednesday's Cup game at the Camp Nou against Osasuna and Sunday's derby game in La Liga at Espanyol.


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