Barca can still win 'beautiful' Clasico without Messi - Griezmann

Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo will not be on the pitch, but Antoine Griezmann still expects a beautiful Clasico at Camp Nou.

Barcelona captain Lionel Messi hobbles off injured   -  Getty Images

Barcelona can still win a "beautiful" Clasico even without Lionel Messi, according to Atletico Madrid star Antoine Griezmann.

Messi will be reduced to the role of spectator as Barca take on arch-rival Real Madrid at Camp Nou on Sunday after suffering a fractured arm in last weekend's 4-2 win over Sevilla, an injury that will sideline him for up to three weeks.

Madrid is a disappointing seventh in LaLiga, four points behind leader Barca and Espanyol, and there is speculation coach Julen Lopetegui will be dismissed regardless of the result in Catalonia.

READ: Barcelona vs Real Madrid: Has the Clasico lost its lustre?

Its underwhelming start to the season follows a transfer window in which Madrid allowed Cristiano Ronaldo to depart for Juventus and did not make a move to replace him.

Yet, even without the winners of the last 10 Ballons d'Or on the field, Griezmann, who confirmed his decision to stay at Atletico amid interest from Barca in a documentary released on the eve of France's successful World Cup campaign, expects an enticing contest.

"It's going to be a beautiful game like all the Clasicos. It's a shame that Messi isn't there for Barcelona, but they have the players to win. Madrid are in need of a win to move forwards. It will be beautiful to watch," he told ESPN.

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