Barcelona coach Gerardo Martino has hinted that captain Carles Puyol could return from injury in Wednesday's Copa del Rey final.
Puyol has missed much of the season with knee problems but may feature as Barcelona look to bounce back from a disappointing week against rivals Real Madrid.
After being knocked out of the UEFA Champions League by Atletico Madrid, a surprise 1-0 defeat at Granada on Saturday put a dent in their hopes of retaining the Liga crown.
The return of their inspirational captain, who will leave the club at the season's end, could be the lift that Barcelona need.
Fellow defenders Gerard Pique (hip) and Marc Bartra (hamstring) have also been sidelined recently but Martino revealed on Tuesday that the diagnosis on all three was encouraging.
"We had some rather good news today regarding fitness (of the defenders) and we worked on some ideas of play," Martino said.
"We are going to make our final evaluation after tomorrow morning's training session.
"We've been watching him (Puyol), how his knee and his injury are developing. I have a very high opinion of Puyol, not just as a footballer but as a person and everything he means to the team.
"So if we do decide that he can play tomorrow, I think this could be a very important moment of the season, not just for him but for his colleagues as well."
Martino insisted that the clash versus Real has "nothing to do" with recent defeats, and rejected suggestions that winning the Copa del Rey could save their season.
He added: "This is a final. This has nothing to do with the two recent competitions. This starts and begins on Wednesday. There is no before, there is no after.
"I don't think this is seeking vengeance for what happened in the Champions League and league. It's important because it is a final.
"I don't think we should be trying to make up for things that happened in different competitions. I don't think a win in one game means that it doesn't matter that we lost before.
"I don't want to play down the importance of winning a title, neither do I want to play down the importance of what has happened in the Champions League and La Liga.
"This is a Clasico in a final and it is a very important match. But whether that would mean we feel happier about what happened in those (recent) games, no."
Martino admitted that Barcelona were "suffering" but that the absence of Real Madrid star Cristiano Ronaldo, who has knee and thigh problems, would boost his team.
He also said that if none of Puyol, Pique and Bartra were fit, they still had enough defensive options.
"At the weekend (against Granada) we realised what different options we have got for centre-back," he continued.
"The game was lost but I don't think that was because problems with defending. I think that was with problems in attack."
|Coach: G. Martino|
for Jordi Alba 46'
for Fàbregas 60'
for Bartra 86'
|Agger: Rodgers discord led to Liverpool departure|
|Bundesliga Preview: Shock leaders face Bayern test, Stuttgart visit Dortmund|
|Rakitic concentrating on Barca not rivals|
|Rodwell pleased with fitness progress|
|Ligue 1 Preview: Blanc eyes killer instinct|
|PSG must work harder - Ibrahimovic|
|Stoke have held Crouch talks, says Hughes|
|Sanchez confident Hernandez will thrive in Madrid|
|Wasted chances cost Chelsea - Mourinho|
|Pellegrini hails City´s best performance|
|Schneiderlin out to avoid December struggles|
|Pearson buoyed by form of Leicester front three|
|Van Gaal running out of defensive options|
|Champions League no excuse - Sterling|
|Copa Sudamericana Preview: Cerro confident after big win|
|Gentiletti out for six months|
|CONCACAF Champions League Preview: Portland primed for top spot|
|Colombian Primera A Review: Cali rise to the summit|
|Neville slams ´soft-centred´ United|
|Liga del Futbol Profesional Boliviano Review: San Jose go top|
|Ecuadorian Primera A Review: Barcelona move clear|
|Liga MX Review: Ronaldinho scores on league debut|
|Costa Rican Primera Division Review: Nunez fires again for Herediano|
|Paraguayan Division Profesional Review: Sol de America end streak|
|Serie A no two-horse race - Garcia|
|Venezuelan Primera Division Review: Tachira thrash Tucanes|
|Brazilian Serie A Review: Cruzeiro stunned late, Goias crush Palmeiras|
|Peruvian Primera Division Review: Melgar, Cesar Vallejo win again|
|Toronto FC 3 Chivas USA 0: Hosts end winless run|
|Ligue 1 Review: Pressure builds on Blanc, Monaco edge to victory|
|Al-Khelaifi gives Blanc vote of confidence|
|Mazzarri frustrated by draw|
|Luis Enrique salutes ´special´ Messi|
|Iachini laments missed chances|
|La Liga Review: Barca hammer Levante, Villarreal in two-goal comeback|
|Serie A Review: Zeman denied Roma revenge, Inter held|
|Paris Saint-Germain 1 Lyon 1: Umtiti adds to pressure on Blanc|
|Levante 0 Barcelona 5: Five-star Barca crush 10-man hosts|
|Palermo 1 Inter 1: Visitors´ progress checked|
|Arsenal v Southampton: Koeman calls for focus|
|Swansea City v Everton: Both sides looking to bounce back in League Cup|
|Police to investigate after Balotelli abused on Twitter|
|Liverpool v Middlesbrough: Rodgers keen to regain winning habit|
|Arabian Gulf League Review: Al Wahda maintain perfect start, Al Jazira held|
|Real Madrid v Elche: Hosts look to build on Depor demolition|
|Eredivisie Review: Ajax triumph in derby, PSV romp to victory|
|Warnock proud after victory at Goodison|
|Mourinho not interested in Pellegrini jibes|
|Pellegrini slams ´small team´ Chelsea´s approach|
|Bundesliga Review: Leverkusen slip up, Cologne held in derby|
|Martinez rues failure to build on strong start|
|Sewe Sport 1 AC Leopards 0: Kouame strike seals slender advantage|
|Scottish Premiership Review: Derby joy for Dundee United, Celtic held|
|Vita Club 2 CS Sfaxien 1: Hosts seize advantage in semi-final|
|Mixed emotions for Lampard after denying Chelsea|
|Irvine hails best day so far|
|Manchester City 1 Chelsea 1: Lampard denies former club|
|Everton 2 Crystal Palace 3: Howard mistakes cost hosts dear|
|Pearson praises Leicester City spirit|
|Van Gaal laments United collapse|
|Pochettino makes no excuses|
|CSL Review: Evergrande leave it late, Liaoning Whowin edge thriller|
|Leicester City 5 Manchester United 3: Hosts stage famous comeback|
|Tottenham 0 West Brom 1: Morrison gives visitors deserved win|
|Lee claims first Hong Kong gold in Incheon|
|Sunderland v Stoke City: Poyet again up for the cup|
|Ancelotti wants Real consistency|
|Dortmund hit by Mkhitaryan injury blow|
|Inzaghi pleased with Milan progress|
|Monk: Hodgson will be back|
|Pardew: Cisse should not have played|
|We cannot entertain title challenge - Rodgers|
|Bayern Munich v Paderborn: Visitors´ surprise start faces litmus test|
|K. League Review: Suwon close gap on top two|
|Empoli v Milan: Inzaghi eyeing top three|
|MLS Review: Wright-Phillips treble inspires Red Bulls rout|
|Bender: We lacked ambition|
|McInnes unhappy after ugly bust-up|
|Cambiasso impressed with Leicester mentality|
|Valverde: Champions League is not an excuse|
|Simeone wants improvement in discipline|
|Conte keeping tabs on Pelle|
|Marseille deserved to beat Rennes - Bielsa|
|La Liga Review: Real end slump with rout, Atletico share spoils|
|Hart unsure on City future|
|Primeira Liga Review: Quinta inspires first Penafiel win, Braga claim late draw|
|ES Setif 2 TP Mazembe 1: Late winner gives Algerians the edge|
|Inzaghi upbeat despite defeat|
|Victory not ´revenge´ for Allegri|
|Simeone defends Jimenez|
|Ligue 1 Review: Gignac double takes Marseille top|
|Patience pays off for Tevez and Juventus|
|Eredivisie Review: Vitesse drop points again, Dordrecht salvage late draw|
|Serie A Review: Allegri wins on Milan return, Empoli fight back|
|Milan 0 Juventus 1: Allegri wins on return to San Siro|
|Klopp rues Dortmund display|
|Allardyce lauds ´outstanding´ first-half performance|
|Coton Sport 0 Al Ahly 1: Soliman screamer puts Egyptians in command|
|Newcastle earned friends with comeback draw, claims Pardew|
|Liverpool ´nowhere near the standard´ - Rodgers|
|Atletico Madrid 2 Celta Vigo 2: Nolito penalty frustrates champions|
|Bundesliga Review: Zinnbauer stops Bayern as Paderborn go top|
|Lambert to close training ground after bug|
|Poyet blasts lacklustre Sunderland|
|Goals and wins are coming - Dyche|
|Koeman calm after Southampton move second|
|Bruce bemoans Hull errors|
|West Ham 3 Liverpool 1: Hosts punish sloppy Reds|
|Mainz 2 Borussia Dortmund 0: Klopp suffers miserable return|
|Guardiola: Fixture congestion taking its toll|
|Deportivo thrashing answered critics - Ancelotti|
|League Two Review: Accrington thrill on Coleman return, Bury go top|
|Bony ´distraught´ after dismissal - Monk|
|Pardew praises senior players after Hull draw|
|Wenger: Ozil showed mental strength|
|League One Review: MK Dons hit Crewe for six, Swindon crush Sheffield United|
|Championship Review: Fulham woes continue under Symons|
|Scottish Premiership Wrap: Inverness overhaul Hamilton at the top|
|Hughes credits QPR fans|
|Aston Villa 0 Arsenal 3: Ozil shines as Gunners get back on track|
|Swansea City 0 Southampton 1: Wanyama leaves it late to down 10-man hosts|
|Deportivo La Coruna 2 Real Madrid 8: Ronaldo hat-trick helps end visitors´ Liga slump|
|Newcastle United 2 Hull City 2: Late Cisse brace lifts pressure on Pardew|
|Burnley 0 Sunderland 0: Both sides await first league win|
|Hamburg 0 Bayern Munich 0: Zinnbauer starts Hamburg reign with impressive point|
|Hosts strike gold on day two in Incheon|
|Redknapp hails Kranjcar quality|
|QPR 2 Stoke City 2: Kranjcar spoils Hughes´ Loftus Road return|
|Howard not expecting European hangover|
|J.League Review: Gamba clinch Osaka derby, Tokushima Vortis on the brink|
|Vermaelen ´getting better every day´|
|Rafael: I want to stay at United forever|
|Ulloa determined to maintain strong form|
|Vidic adjusting to Serie A referees|
|Conte: There is room for a professional Balotelli|
|Mourinho wants tougher sanctions for FFP breaches|
|Milan v Juventus: Allegri returns to San Siro|
|Allardyce lauds in-form Downing|
|Real Salt Lake 5 Colorado Rapids 1: Poor visitors lose again|
|Mignolet "aggressive", says Rodgers|
|´Old´ City approaching dangerous position, says Neville|
|Shakhtar´s Donbass Arena hit by shelling|
|Song excited to face hero Gerrard|
|Everything is normal, says Ancelotti|