Lionel Messi has endured a nightmare start to the season

Lionel Messi went off with an injury vs Villarreal

Lionel Messi, along with eternal rival Cristiano Ronaldo, has dominated world football for over a decade.

The Argentinian forward has shattered record-after-record as he has achieved feats no other player has ever gone before.

One of Messi's best traits is that he rarely suffers from injury.

In the past three seasons, he has missed just 10 games due to injury.

However, now aged 32, it appears injuries may now be starting to get the better of him.

After starring in his country's Copa America side this summer, Messi returned to Barca having missed two of their friendlies.

And he wouldn't feature in pre-season after suffering a calf injury.

It was hoped that he would only miss their La Liga opener however, Messi endured a setback late on in August, putting him out for another three weeks.

He made his return against Dortmund but flattered to deceive after coming off the bench. 

The game eventually ended 0-0 with Barcelona only managing one shot on target throughout the whole game and Messi largely being frustrated. A video of his 'disasterclass' even went viral -which you can watch by clicking this link.

Messi needed treatment on his groin

He was then called upon from the bench against newly promoted Granada but he could not stop his side from being shocked 2-0.

Messi finally made his first start of the season against Villarreal on Tuesday night. Barca went on to win 2-1, with the 32-year-old setting up Antoine Griezmann's opening goal.

However, it wasn't long before he went down with injury once again.

Messi needed treatment on an apparent groin injured sustained during the first half-an-hour which forced him off at half-time.

Lionel Messi struggled against Dortmund

It really has been a nightmare start to the season for Messi. It's no doubt that this is the worst start to a season he's had as a player.

He's set to have further tests today but Ernesto Valverde has played down his injury fears.

"When something happens to Messi everyone stops, on pitch and in stands," he said, per the Daily Mail.

"He has a small problem in the abductor muscle and we didn't want to risk him any more. In principal that is all it is."

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