Luis Enrique, the Barcelona coach, has said that he is hopeful that Andres Iniesta will be out of action for a matter of weeks rather than months after suffering ligament damage to his right knee.
Over the weekend Iniesta was carried off the field on a stretcher in tears after just 14 minutes of play during Barcelona’s thrilling 3 – 2 win over Valencia. It was a firm challenge from the Valencia captain Enzo Perez that resulted in the injury.
In a statement Barcelona said that Iniesta has “injured the lateral collateral ligament in his right knee.” They said that once he is back in Barcelona he will undergo further tests to find out the exact extent and nature of the injury.
Coach Enrique was left incensed on the Barcelona bench when Valencia’s Perez escaped the incident without even a yellow card.
He said that you could clearly see “from the tackle it was an injury, and a serious one. We will see tomorrow, but it will be weeks. There wasn’t even a yellow card.”
This was not the only controversy of the game as Valencia fans threw bottles at the celebrating Barcelona players following Lionel Messi’s winning penalty.
Messi’s goal put the team ahead and clinched victory but during celebrations a plastic bottle thrown by Valencia fans caught Neymar in the face and rebounded into Luis Suarez prompting both players to go to ground and Messi to lead the protests from the visiting team.
Following the game Valencia condemned the incident and said that violent behaviour will not be tolerated and that the incident will be investigated.
Enrique also criticised the Valencia fans saying, “It certainly isn’t something that the majority of Valencia fans like to see, and me neither. We celebrated a goal as you have to celebrate against an opponent who makes things difficult.”