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Messi hurts left thigh in 1-1 draw at Atletico

August 22, 2013

MADRID (AP) — Barcelona forward Lionel Messi hurt his left thigh during Wednesday’s 1-1 draw at Atletico Madrid and will undergo tests to determine the severity of the injury.

Messi was replaced by Cesc Fabregas at halftime in the first leg of the Spanish Super Cup. New signing Neymar went on as a substitute in the 59th minute and scored the equalizer following David Villa’s opener for Atletico.

Barcelona said in a medical report that “Messi was substituted due to precaution for pain in the back of his left thigh caused by a knock” and that he will undergo further tests Thursday.

Barcelona coach Gerard Martino said he didn’t think twice about resting Messi.

“If a player feels he has a physical problem that stops him from playing, it makes no sense to leave him on the pitch,” Martino said.

Messi had a minor muscle injury in his left leg last week but was cleared in time for Sunday’s Spanish league opener and scored two goals in a 7-0 rout of Levante.

The Argentina star missed several games at the end of last season with a right hamstring strain.

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