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Barcelona will start pre-season under Hansi Flick without six senior midfield options

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Photo by Alex Grimm/Getty Images

In two days, FC Barcelona will kickstart their new era under the management of Hansi Flick as they begin their pre-season camp at the club’s Ciutat Esportiva facilities.

A couple of weeks later, the Blaugrana will fly across the Atlantic for their pre-season tour of the USA, where they are scheduled to play three friendly matches as preparation for the new campaign.

However, even before the pre-season is underway, Flick is already having to deal with some notable absences through fitness or injury problems as well as contractual situations in a few cases.

The midfield department appears to be the worst hit for the Blaugrana as they will start the pre-season this week without as many as senior central midfielders.

Gavi

Still recovering from the ACL injury and the meniscus issues that he suffered last year, Gavi is some way away from making a comeback, with a return to full training expected only after two months.

After that, it might still take a few weeks or months for the La Masia sensation to return to his best level and his absence will be a blow for Flick and Barcelona.

Pedri

It has been a terrible year for Pedri as far as injuries and fitness woes are concerned. Having missed a good chunk of matches for Barcelona in the second half of last season, the 21-year-old has now suffered another injury.

Indeed, Pedri is down with a knee issue that is set to keep him out for around six weeks, meaning he will not only miss the pre-season but possibly even the start of the new campaign as well.

No Pedri, Gavi and Frenkie for pre-season. (Photo by THOMAS COEX/AFP via Getty Images)

Frenkie de Jong

Another injury casualty for Barcelona, Frenkie de Jong has been out on the sidelines since April due to an ankle injury. It was expected that the Dutchman could be back in time for the Euros but he was forced to withdraw from the Netherlands squad as he was not fully healed.

Now, it is being suggested that De Jong could be still some way away from mounting a full recovery and could even miss the start of the season.

Ilkay Gundogan

A midfielder who is expected to play an important role in Hansi Flick’s new setup at Barcelona, Gundogan, too, will not be a part of the pre-season from the get-go. However, unlike the aforementioned trio, his unavailability is not due to injury.

The 33-year-old will miss the early parts of the pre-season due to his involvement at the Euros with Germany. Following their elimination from the tournament last week, the midfielder is expected to be away on a brief vacation but will likely be back in time for the US tour.

Fermin Lopez

Another midfielder who will miss not only the start of the pre-season but the entirety of it, Fermin Lopez is bound by international commitments. Currently with the Spain squad at the Euros, the La Masia man will then fly to France for the Olympics.

As such, Fermin, who would have had an excellent chance to stake a claim for the No. 10 role in Flick’s setup in Pedri’s injury-enforced absence, will not participate in pre-season in any form.

Fermin, Roberto, and Gundogan will not start pre-season under Flick. (Photo by THOMAS COEX/AFP via Getty Images)

Sergi Roberto

Finally, the sixth midfielder who will be unavailable at Flick’s disposal is captain Sergi Roberto, whose contract expired on June 30 and is technically a free agent already. He has a contract offer but is conditional on the club’s FFP situation.

With no guarantees over his future, Roberto, currently on vacation, is not expected to be a part of the pre-season under the new manager at least until his situation is resolved.

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