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José Giménez' injury throws Barcelona availability in doubt

Atletico's recent injury crisis will test the squad to the limit with plenty of tinkering for Simeone to do

Denis Doyle/Getty Images

José Giménez is set to spend three weeks on the sideline after Atletico Madrid confirmed the Uruguayan defender sustained a grade 2 hamstring injury. The central defender is the third player in the same position to be added to the injury list and joins Diego Godin and Stefan Savic on the treatment table in recent weeks.

The injury also means that Giménez is a doubt for the first leg tie with Barcelona in the quarter-finals of the Champions League.

Giménez pulled up in the dying minutes of Atletico's loss to Sporting Gijon at the weekend and immediately waved a distressed hand to the bench in acknowledgment of the injury. Diego Simeone does have Savic coming back into contention having suffered a similar injury at the end of February but is left with 19-year-old Lucas Hernandez and Nacho Monsalve to chose from against Real Betis in La Liga.

Atletico have conceded just 14 goals in La Liga this season and take great pride in the consistency provided by their back four. League leaders Barcelona are the closest in terms of goals conceded with 24 but the recent injury crisis will surely test Atletico's squad and Diego Simeone's ability to think his way out of such a situation.