Argentina's four-time World Player of the Year Lionel Messi's recovery from a torn hamstring is on schedule, his club Barcelona confirmed on Wednesday. Messi was ruled out for the rest of the year when he suffered the latest in a number of recent muscle injuries in Barca's 4-1 win over Real Betis at the beginning of November.
The 26-year-old is currently in Argentina as he undergoes treatment, but has been joined in Buenos Aires by Barca sporting director Andoni Zubizarreta and club doctor Ricard Pruna.
"The fitness test and scan carried out this morning by doctor Ricard Pruna at the training facilities of the Argentine Football Federation in Buenos Aires showed good progress in Lionel Messi's injury," the club said in a statement.
"More tests will be carried out on Friday to set the timescale for the third part of the player's recovery process and training schedule."
Barca boss Gerardo Martino said on Tuesday that he expects Messi to be back in Barcelona on January 2. And the Catalans hope that their star man could even be fit to face Atletico Madrid in a clash between the top two sides in La Liga on January 11.