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 Posted by ESPN Staff
May 9, 2006

Messi admits Paris may come too early

MADRID, May 9 (Reuters) - Barcelona forward Lionel Messi has admitted it is touch and go whether he will be fit for next week's Champions League final against Arsenal.

'This is the key week for me. I will have to see if I can play a few minutes for Barcelona in the league this weekend and then we will see if I can make it for the final,' the 18-year-old told reporters at a get-together of the Argentine squad in Madrid.

'No one wants to miss any final and especially the Champions League, but it is going to be very difficult.'

Messi, who has been outstanding when he has played for Barcelona this season, tore a muscle in his thigh during the second leg of his side's first knockout round victory over Chelsea at the start of March and has not played since.

He was originally expected to be out for around a month, but he suffered a recurrence of the injury when he tried to rush his comeback.

'I've learned a lot about injuries and that you can't hurry them,' he said. 'What is important is that I make a full recovery. I'm very calm and relaxed about it now.'

Barcelona, who retained their Spanish title last week, play Arsenal in the final in Paris on May 17.

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