Messi, Suarez among those rested by Barca with Liverpool in mind

With the second leg against Liverpool to come on Tuesday, Barcelona has opted to leave Lionel Messi out of its squad to face Celta Vigo.

Lionel Messi and Luis Suarez   -  Getty Images

Barcelona has rested Lionel Messi and Luis Suarez for Saturday's trip to Celta Vigo ahead of its Champions League semifinal second leg at Liverpool.

Ernesto Valverde's side is 3-0 up from the opening leg, which saw Suarez strike against his former club before Messi stole the show with a late brace.

Messi's second - a stunning free-kick from 30 yards beyond goalkeeper Alisson - was his 600th goal for Barca, though he will not be adding to that tally at Celta.

READ| Messi vs Ronaldo: 1,200 goals and counting... but which is the best?

With his side already crowned La Liga champion, Valverde has taken the decision to rest a number of his key players, with Marc-Andre ter Stegen, Gerard Pique, Sergio Busquets, Jordi Alba and Ivan Rakitic also left out of the matchday 18 announced on Friday.

 

Liverpool, by contrast, cannot afford such selection luxuries ahead of the return fixture on Tuesday.

Jurgen Klopp's men are a point behind Premier League leader Manchester City ahead of the trip to Newcastle United this weekend, and a defeat at St James' Park would allow Pep Guardiola's side to successfully retain its title with a win over Leicester City on Monday.

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