16 February 2012

Welcome back Keita!

The Malian is back with the squad after returning from the African Nations Cup and was heartily welcomed home by his colleagues. There was also huge applause for Afellay, who has started training on the pitch.

Two players were the focus of all attention on Thursday morning at the Ciutat Esportiva: Seydou Keita and Ibrahim Afellay. The Malian is back after an excellent performance at the African Nations Cup, where his country came third and he was named in the All Star XI. Keita, who left for Gabon in early January, was given a rapturous welcome home by his team mates.

Meanwhile, Afellay has started working out on the field, almost fve months after picking up a knee injury. He was also given an ovation this morning and then exercised in isolation.

Sergio Busquets, with a wounded knee, and Adriano, who was taken off on Tuesday as a precautionary measure due to a problem with the soleus in his left leg, also trained separately, as did Xavi, who stayed in the gym. Four B team players made up the numbers, namely defenders Montoya, Bartra and Muniesa plus striker Tello. Dos Santos and Sergi Roberto, who have been regular features of first team sessions of late, trained with the reserves today. (via FCBarcelona.com)