Barcelona issue update on Ronald Araujo after being rushed to hospital with head injury
The 23-year-old was invovled in a sickening clash of heads with teammate Gavi during Tuesday's match and was rushed to hospital in an ambulance that came onto the Camp Nou pitch. Araujo and the Spain international were challenging for a looping ball in the 62nd minute and, while Gavi went down immediately, the Uruguayan initially raced back to his position before suddenly dropping to the floor.
Manager Xavi Hernandez confirmed post-match that Araujo was out of danger and Barcelona have since issued an official statement confirming the good news that he has been discharged. "Complementary tests on first-team player Ronald Araujo have been successful and he has been discharged from the hospital," the club tweeted on Wednesday. "The evolution will mark his availability."
While Gavi was able to continue and complete the match, which included 11 minutes of injury time, fans chanted "U-RU-GUAYO" from the stands, as the focus turned from the football to Araujo's worrying condition. The scoreline was 3-1 when the incident occurred, with two goals from former Arsenal captain Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and a strike from Memphis Depay earning the three points for the hosts.
Celta talisman Iago Aspas pulled one back for the visitors in the second half but their hopes of coming away from Catalonia with more than a loss were dashed when defender Jeison Murillo was sent off for a poorly-timed last-ditch challenge.
As the full-time whistle blew and supporters prayed for a positive update on Araujo, Xavi thankfully told reporters: "The doctor has told us he is conscious. He will spend the night in hospital but he is out of danger. The doctor said we shouldn't worry, that he will spend the night in hospital as a precaution, nothing more."
Aubameyang and Dutch midfielder Frenkie de Jong also addressed the situation in their post-match interviews. "We were scared by the accident," Aubameyang, who joined the Blaugrana in January after leaving Arsenal, admitted. "I hope everything is fine." Ex- Ajax ace De Jong added: "We just heard that Araujo is OK. Hopefully he can return to the training pitch soon. It’s always worrying when a player is down."
Araujo has been a star of Barca's resurgent season under Xavi and recently put pen to paper on a new four-year contract after being linked with a transfer to Manchester United. "I believe in the project and we will get back up and start winning trophies again," the La Masia academy graduate declared after signing his deal, which includes a staggering €1billion (£840million) release clause.
"I want Barca fans to feel excited about the team, because we are going back to the Barca DNA and we have a solid base of young and veteran players. We have a team to dream about."