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By ESPN Staff
Feb 10, 2007

Messi returns for Barca after long lay-off

MADRID, Feb 10 (Reuters) - Lionel Messi returned to the Barcelona squad after over three months on the sidelines when coach Frank Rijkaard named the Argentine forward in the 18-strong list for Sunday's match at home to Racing Santander.

The 19-year-old has been out of action since breaking a bone in his left foot during the 3-1 league win over Real Zaragoza in early November.

Leading striker Samuel Eto'o returned to action in the closing minutes of last weekend's 0-0 draw at Osasuna after a four-month lay-off with a knee injury.

With Ronaldinho also in the squad after recovering from a bruised knee, Rijkaard now has his first choice attack at his disposal ready for the Champions League clash with Liverpool later this month.

Iceland striker Eidur Gudjohnsen was left out of the squad as were injured defenders Lilian Thuram and Silvinho.