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Barcelona to rest Lionel Messi?

Lionel Messi news

Barcelona could consider resting Messi ahead of World Cup

Barcelona are likely to rest Lionel Messi for a few games during the second half of the season with Argentina wanting the superstar in fine shape ahead of this summer's World Cup in Russia.

Messi, 30, has once again been the talisman in the Catalan ranks, and his performances have helped the side inch closer to another La Liga crown, the first under Ernesto Valverde.

As a result, they have been calls from Argentina to rest the forward in certain matches, and Barcelona are likely to take the opinion on board, Spanish outlet Marca claims.

Messi has started 29 matches across all competitions this term, and Valverde could potentially place the Argentina on the bench for games which are deemed winnable in the Spanish La Liga.

Barcelona travel to west London to face Chelsea in the Champions League round of 16 first-leg on Tuesday night, and Messi will be aiming to break his goalscoring duck of eight games versus the Blues.