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26-year-old Barcelona winger unlikely to start against Real Betis – report



Photo by Pedro Vilela/Getty Images

The workload and international commitment of Barcelona forward Raphinha is expected to take a toll not just on the player, but on the team as well as he is unlikely to make the starting XI in the upcoming La Liga game against Real Betis, writes Sergi Capdevila for SPORT.

The former Leeds United man is currently on international duty after being included in the squad for Brazil’s FIFA World Cup Qualifiers against Bolivia and Peru.

The 26-year-old was on the scoresheet in a 5-1 win over Bolivia and was not even substituted by his manager while the likes of Richarlison and Rodrygo were.

The forward will be in action for Brazil once again, this time in Lima against Peru and it is largely expected that he will be given a leading role. 

Raphinha unlikely to start vs Betis

Considering the tight schedule, it is understood that Raphinha will endure substantial fatigue from all the travelling and match minutes. Furthermore, it is crucial to consider that the match in Lima is set to commence at 9:00 p.m. local time. 

Following the game, the team will return to Brazilian soil and Raphinha will then allocate a significant portion of Wednesday to the return journey to Barcelona.

Once in Catalonia, he is anticipated to join the training session scheduled for Thursday at the Ciutat Esportiva Joan Gamper ahead of the Blaugrana’s home game against Real Betis. 

Raphinha likely to be on the bench vs Betis. (Photo by Eric Alonso/Getty Images)

Consequently, the forward will only have the opportunity to partake in two training sessions, with the first typically being less physically demanding. 

Given the substantial minutes played, the effects of jet lag, and the extensive travel endured by the player, it appears improbable that he will be in a condition to start in the match against Betis.

No shortage of options for Xavi

Now, it is no secret that Raphinha is a vital member of the team but it also must be noted that he only played additional minutes against Osasuna last time out.

This is mostly due to the fact that the competition within the roster is tough and all this international commitment is not helping his cause.

Lamine Yamal is enjoying a fine breakthrough campaign while Ferran Torres is also knocking on the doors with his goalscoring performances from the bench.

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