Barcelona forward Lionel Messi is a serious doubt for next week’s Champions League semi-final against Milan, after he was ruled out of Friday’s Primera Liga match against Villarreal.

The Argentinian has been out of action since the beginning of March when he tore a thigh muscle during Barcelona’s victory over Chelsea, but was expected to have made a recovery ready for the Milan match.

“Messi felt pain and serious muscle fatigue in the injured area during the final stages of his treatment,” the club said on its website on Wednesday.

“Treatment will continue until the player can rejoin the group without any recurrence of the symptoms.”

Mexican defender Rafael Marquez and midfielder Thiago Motta are also doubtful for the game at the San Siro.

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