Barcelona will be without Brazilian star Neymar for two weeks. The forward has been infected with Parotitis (mumps), the news has been confirmed by the club’s medical staff. It has also been confirmed that as a child, he was vaccinated against mumps.
However, the vaccine for the disease is not perfect and there are chances that a person who has been vaccinated twice could still contract the disease, although they are nine times less likely to be infected than a person without the vaccine. (source: http://www.cdc.gov/mumps/outbreaks/outbreak-patient-qa.html)
With people normally taking a few weeks to recover, the diagnosis given by the clubs medical staff say he will be out for two weeks. This means he will be a doubt for the European Super Cup against Sevilla on August 11 and the two leg, Spanish Super Cup against Athletic Bilbao. He will likely miss the start of La Liga when Barcelona open their title defence against Athletic Bilbao (making the third consecutive meeting between the sides at the start of the 2015/16 season).
Having finished the 2014/15 season with 39 goals in 51 appearances, Barcelona lose a major threat down the left in the form of Neymar. They still possess tremendous firepower in Lionel Messi and Luis Suarez who are expected to play. Neymar will not be the sole first team absentee with Jordi Alba and Douglas Costa also missing through injury. Vidal and Turan are ineligible to play for the Catalans till January 2016.
Neymar’s place will mostly be taken by Pedro. While the Spaniard is expected to seek new pastures in the Premier League, he will be the most obvious choice to start. If Enrique drops him given his impending departure, Munir or Sandro, two youth players who made sporadic appearances last season are likely to start. It would be an opportunity to shine, given they have possibly four to five games to prove their worth.
Despite the setback, Barcelona will still head into all matches as favorites as they look forward to becoming the only side to have won the sextuple twice.
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