By Pilar Suarez
Former Spain international Javi Moreno feels AC Milan have enough quality to cause Barcelona trouble in their Champions League encounter at San Siro even if Mario Balotelli doesnt play.
The 23-year-old is struggling with a thigh injury ahead of Tuesday's match, yet Moreno - who came through the ranks of the Barca youth academy and also wore the Milan jersey during his playing days - is confident that the Rossoneri can cope without the flamboyant attacker.
"Balotelli's absence will not be decisive. Milan have some great players and they can do a good job regardless of whether Balotelli is there," Moreno told Goal.
"Barcelona appear to be in better form at the moment, but Milan can always cause any team problems. Barca have the better team, but Milan will always be Milan.
"I don't know the reasons for Milan's disappointing start in Serie A, but they remain one of the best teams in the world and will bounce back."
The former attacker then went on to discuss the Blaugrana's Champions League chances and he feels they have the potential to go all the way again.
"Barcelona can always challenge for the Champions League as they generally have a great team and excellent players. It will not be easy, though, as there are some other great teams out there.
"They are less vulnerable in defence than before under Gerardo Martino. That could prove to be an advantage.
"[Carles] Puyol is a vital player for Barca, but he's been out of action for a long time. I'm not sure he's ready for a game like this. You have to take things one step at a time."
Both sides last met in the Champions League round of 16 last season, with Milan winning 2-0 at San Siro, but losing 4-0 at Camp Nou in the return.