Henry faces final fitness race

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The Independent Football

Barcelona striker Thierry Henry is doubtful for the Champions League final due to an anterior cruciate ligament strain in his right knee. The 31-year-old suffered the injury during last Saturday’s 6-2 win at Real Madrid, forcing him to miss the midweek 1-1 draw at Chelsea which booked Barça’s date with holders Manchester United in Rome on 27 May.

A club statement released last night read: “Thierry Henry will not play in the Copa del Rey final and he is facing a fitness race to be able to appear in the Champions League final in Rome. According to club medics, Henry has suffered an anterior cruciate ligament strain in his right knee and is undergoing specific treatment to try and ensure that he can play in Rome against Manchester United.”

As well as the Copa del Rey final against Athletic Bilbao next Wednesday, Henry will miss La Liga games against Villarreal, Real Mallorca and Osasuna.

Barça have the chance to win the first of three possible trophies this season when they host Villarreal in La Liga tomorrow. The leaders are seven points ahead of Real Madrid, and hold the head-to-head advantage with four games left. They need to win while hoping the champions fail to take all three points off Valencia, when Real travel to the Mestalla this evening.