Leo Messi and Dani Alves at the Ciutat Esportiva

Leo Messi and Dani Alves were at the Ciutat Esportiva on Saturday morning / PHOTO: VICTOR SALGADO

While most of the squad were in Helsinki for Saturday’s friendly, at the Ciutat Esportiva it was training as usual for Messi, Mascherano, Mathieu, Song and Alves. The Frenchman has not been given medical clearance yet, but joined his colleagues nevertheless, and Adriano was also able to join in with some of the exercises.

Xavi and Neymar did specific work on their respective fitness concerns, the captain with a minor injury to his left thigh and the Brazilian still recovering from the fractured vertebra suffered at the World Cup. Ibrahim Afellay, however, was given leave to be absent and work on matters regarding his future.

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