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By ESPN Staff
Sep 25, 2006

Barca overlook Saviola for Werder Bremen encounter

MADRID, Sept 25 (Reuters) - Barcelona coach Frank Rijkaard has left Argentine striker Javier Saviola out of the squad to face Werder Bremen away in the Champions League on Wednesday.

Saviola had earned his first call up to the Barca squad this season for the visit of Valencia on Sunday, but despite playing the last few minutes of the 1-1 draw, dropped out of contention again on Monday.

'Rijkaard always tells me things face to face, whether it is good or bad. He knows what I can do,' Saviola told a news conference.

'When I am left out he always has words of comfort that give me confidence to continue training hard.'

Saviola, who has one year left on his contract, had been told he was surplus to requirements this season, but preferred to stay and fight for his place rather than look for a move.

Mexican centre back Rafael Marquez and Dutch full back Giovanni van Bronckhorst were also left out, while winger Santi Ezquerro is injured.

Brazilians Thiago Motta and Silvinho and French defender Lilian Thuram return after being rested for Sunday's game.

The European and Spanish champions top Champions League Group A after their 5-0 win over Levksi Sofia two weeks ago. They also lead the Primera Liga on goal difference.