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Aleix Vidal

Barcelona confirm Aleix Vidal out until next season with horrific ankle injury

01:10 GMT+3 12/02/2017
Aleix Vidal Neymar Messi FC Barcelona Athletic LaLiga
The right-back went down under a Theo Hernandez challenge in the 87th minute and faces a lengthy spell on the sidelines

Barcelona have confirmed that Aleix Vidal will miss the remainder of the season with a badly dislocated ankle in the 87th minute of his team’s mauling of Alaves.

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Luis Enrique’s side were leading 6-0 in the dying stages of the game at Estadio de Mendizorroza when Alaves’s Theo Hernandez slid in on Vidal.

The right-back, who has been performing well of late and provided the assist for Luis Suarez to score the first goal of the match, went down and stayed down. He was clearly in a lot of pain and team-mate Andres Iniesta immediately signalled for a stretcher.

Pictures showed that Vidal’s ankle had twisted into a sickening position and he was stretchered off and rushed to hospital in Vitoria for treatment.

Barcelona confirmed late on Saturday night that Vidal had dislocated his ankle and is expected to be out recovering for five months - meaning he won't return until 2017-18.

"We knew from the outset that he really hurt himself," coach Luis Enrique said after the game. "It's a shame for the player, the team and for Barca.

"Hopefully he will recover well, that I am sure he will. It is something serious but we have to wait for the analysis of the doctors.

"Aleix's exit troubled us. It is not nice to see a serious injury to a footballer, but he is in very good hands."

The 27-year-old has scored twice this season and looked to have nailed down the right-back spot at Camp Nou but he could now be facing a lengthy lay-off on the sidelines.

Vidal didn’t have good memories of facing Alaves even before this game. He was made a scapegoat for Barca’s shock 2-1 defeat at the hands of the Basque side back in September and it took him 41 days and 14 matches before he featured in Enrique’s team again.

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He had started three of the last four La Liga games, however, and was caught on camera making a rude gesture at Atletico Madrid coach Diego Simeone following the Copa del Rey clash at Camp Nou last week.

Sergi Roberto is suspended for the final of the Copa del Rey, when Barcelona and Alaves will meet again, and Vidal's injury means Blaugrana will be without a recognised right-back for the game.