La Liga giants Barcelona have not had a dream start to their La Liga campaign of the 2019-20 season as they lost 1-0 in their opening match against Athletic Bilbao. Barcelona star player Lionel Messi was missing from the game as he is yet to regain match fitness and the side evidently missed his services. Although players like Antoine Griezmann, Luis Suarez and Ousmane Dembele started in the match, they failed to challenge the defence of Bilbao team.

Team manager Ernesto Valverde had earlier clarified that they are not willing to take any kind of risk with Lionel Messi and want him to regain complete fitness and be match ready before asking him to don the Barcelona kit in the season. They will be hoping that the Argentine is fit ahead of their second league match. They need his services more now than ever since their other key player Dembele will be out for four-five weeks owing to a hamstring injury.

According to a report published in Don Balon, Lionel Messi has returned to training earlier than scheduled. The report adds that he did so to show that Messi is the leader at Barcelona. The report also claims that Griezmann was not quite sure why Messi had not returned to train with the team even though other players who had participated in the Copa America were already back. Now, Messi’s gesture has answered all his queries.

Lionel Messi reportedly trained alone on Saturday and Sunday and also worked on regaining fitness before their first home match of the season. They will be up against Real Betis on Sunday.