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Football | Spain

Alex Song © Action Images

Duo out of Barca's game at Valladolid



Barcelona fullback Adriano and midfielder Alex Song have minor injuries and will miss Saturday's match at Real Valladolid as a precaution, the La Liga leaders said on Friday.

Brazilian Adriano, who scored a brilliant goal in last weekend's 4-1 win at home to second-placed Atletico Madrid, has a thigh problem, Barca said in a statement on their website (www.fcbarcelona.com).

Cameroon international Song, who was unlikely to start the game, is suffering pain in his left knee, they added.

A win for unbeaten Barca would extend their record start to the season and would mean a 16th victory in 17 league games for Tito Vilanova's side.

The only points they have dropped were in a 2-2 draw at home to arch rivals Real Madrid in October and they are nine clear of second-placed Atletico Madrid and 13 ahead of Real.

The club were rocked this week by the news that Vilanova, promoted from assistant coach to replace Pep Guardiola at the end of last season, needed more surgery and chemotherapy on his saliva glands.

Vilanova had the operation on Thursday and his assistant Jordi Roura has taken charge until he is well enough to return.

Midfielder Sergio Busquets said he was sure Vilanova would be watching Saturday's game and the players were determined to win to give him a lift and help his recovery.

He said the squad had full confidence in Roura, a product of the club's youth academy who worked as a technical analyst under Guardiola and Vilanova.

"We will all come together to help Jordi Roura, who is absolutely capable of doing a good job," Busquets told a news conference.

"He has been here for years and he knows the place well. He knows what he has to do," added the Spain international.

"He will coach the first team during Tito's absence and I am sure he will do it well."

Saturday's match is Lionel Messi's final chance to add to his world annual record goals tally of 90.



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