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The French defender has been out of action for nearly a year after undergoing a liver transplant, but he is slowly edging closer to his comeback

Barcelona sporting director Andoni Zubizarreta has stressed that the Catalans will not rush Eric Abidal's return to action after a lengthy spell on the sidelines.

The French defender underwent a liver transplant in April 2012, and has not featured for the Blaugrana since, but was recently declared fit to make a comeback.

"The aim of the process is for Abidal to play again. We don’t want to rush things. We’ll take things one step at a time," Zubizarreta was quoted as saying on the official Barcelona website.

"Life has its moments and situations and it’s a long and difficult road, so we always have to stand by him. We have come here together."

Abidal resumed squad training again on Tuesday after spending a few days in hospital for routine checks.

Zubizarreta then went on to reveal that Barcelona are ready to open contract talks with promising youngsters Gerard Deulofeu and Rafinha.

"We’ll sit down with Deulofeu and talk about his staying on, the same goes for Rafinha."

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