Barcelona to start preseason with 18 players

AP, Sunday 17 Jul 2011

European champion Barcelona says Spain internationals Xavi Hernandez, Andres Iniesta and Carles Puyol will be among a group of 18 players to start preseason training Monday

Carles Puyol

 World player of the year Lionel Messi, who has been with the Argentina team at the Copa America, will be among the absentees.

Messi, along with Argentina teammates Javier Mascherano and Gabriel Milito— plus Barcelona’s Brazil internationals Daniel Alves and Adriano—will be given extra time to recover following the South American tournament.

Argentina was eliminated in the quarterfinals on Saturday, while Brazil faces Paraguay later Sunday.

Short link: