Barcelona Manager, Ernesto Valverde has stated that there is no need to “overdramatize” the latest injury of £96.8m summer signing, Ousmane Dembele.
The former Borussia Dortmund forward is condemned to face another month out after picking up a new hamstring injury in his substitute appearance in Sunday’s 4-2 La Liga win over Real Sociedad days after his return from a four-month injury.
The France International who was Barcelona’s club record signing before the recent £142m acquisition of Brazilian, Philippe Coutinho only made three appearances before he sustained the long-term injury in September.
Coutinho is yet to make his debut due to a stubborn thigh problem and Valverde may also have to do without Dembele for another four weeks as a defender, Samuel Umtiti is similarly unavailable.
The Barcelona boss while speaking before the club’s Copa del Rey quarter-final first leg on Wednesday night believes they will approach the situation one at a time.
In his remarks, he said: “He [Dembele] suffered a significant incident at the start of the season in Getafe and now he has a small problem, that has little to do with the previous one,”
“We won’t overdramatize (this injury) either. People start to talk about how some players have an issue and in the end, people start believing it.
“I have no doubt that the player will overcome it.
“He had been playing little bits of matches as he returned and the plan for him was to come back little by little.
“It’ll be the same when he returns from this one. We hope that he’s not missing for long.”
The Catalans head to Estadi Cornella-El Prat as they seek to extend their unbeaten run to 30 matches.
Valverde will however not take the test of his former club flippantly.
“Espanyol is in a good run of form, as the numbers show,” said Valverde, who was at the helms at Espanyol during to club’s charge to the final of the 2007 UEFA Cup at Hampden Park, where they lost on penalties to Sevilla.
“It’s a derby and any gap is reduced as a result of the emotional factor.
“You need to try not to have bad spells in knockout ties because they can prove costly.
“We must try to be solid. It will be difficult to reach the semi-finals, and we respect them a lot.”