This morning, Diario SPORT reported that Lionel Messi will not be ready for the Clásico showdown set to take place at the Santiago Bernabéu on November 21. (Collective sigh of relief or agony?)

Apparently, there have been a couple of bumps on the Barça crack’s road to recovery; the left knee ligament damage that he sustained vs. Las Palmas has left him with insufficient strength, unable to run for prolonged periods of time, and it has set his recovery timeline back a bit.

As a madridista, this news should probably put me over the moon with joy and excitement, but rather than attempting to bring him back too soon – risking his health and subsequently the latter half of Barça’s season – I’m taking solace in the fact that the medical staff is doing its very best to ensure that he is back fully fit as soon as possible. It’s a medical staff he knows and trusts, too: Argentine physiotherapist Luis Garcia and masseuse Marcelo D’Andrea.

On the flipside, this news should not be met with exaggerated doomsday reactions from Barcelona fans. Let’s not forget that Luis Súarez and Neymar have combined to score Barça’s last 14 goals! That is pretty special.

But, it is true that Messi often shines brighter than the rest when it comes to Clásico days.

He will be missed, but Barcelona will undoubtedly still be in the title race by the time he graces us with his presence on the pitch once more.