Barca be­gin six-tro­phy chase with­out Ney­mar

The Pak Banker - - INTERNATIONAL BUSINESS/SPORTS -

Barcelona open their cam­paign with the chance to build on an im­pres­sive tro­phy haul from last sea­son when they face Sevilla in the UEFA Su­per Cup in Tbil­isi on Tues­day (to­day).

How­ever, they will have to do with­out one of their star tri­umvi­rate up front as Brazil­ian for­ward Ney­mar has been ruled out for two weeks af­ter con­tract­ing the mumps.

The 23-year-old had only just re­turned to ac­tion af­ter a dis­ap­point­ing Copa Amer­ica, but he and Lionel Messi s pres­ence sparked Barca into life af­ter a bad run of pre-sea­son re­sults as both scored in a 3-0 win over Roma in their fi­nal friendly out­ing last week.

Messi will be fit to start along­side Luis Suarez in at­tack hav­ing re­turned a week early from his sum­mer break af­ter guid­ing Ar­gentina to the Copa Amer­ica fi­nal. Manch­ester United tar­get Pe­dro Ro­driguez is ex­pected to take Ney­mar's place.

Hav­ing equalled the club s most suc­cess­ful ever cam­paign with the tre­ble of La Liga, Copa del Rey and Cham­pi­ons League last sea­son, the Cata­lans can now re­peat the feat of Pep Guardi­ola s side six years ago that won six tro­phies in a cal­en­dar year by adding both the Euro­pean and Span­ish Su­per Cups to the Club World Cup.

And for­mer Sevilla midfielder Ivan Rakitic in­sists Barca s hunger for more tro­phies has not been eased by their suc­cess last sea­son. "There is noth­ing bet­ter than start­ing the sea­son with a ti­tle," said the Croa­t­ian. "No one has more de­sire to win than us. We want to con­tinue mak­ing history and win all six tro­phies, but we will go step-by-step."

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