MADRID (Reuters) -- Andres Iniesta had been passed fit to return to action for Barcelona after recovering from a thigh injury and could return for the city derby at Espanyol in La Liga on Sunday.

The Spanish international damaged a thigh muscle in the King's Cup just before the winter break and missed their Cup last-16 first leg win over Osasuna on Wednesday.

"He's been passed fit so it is almost certain he will make the squad," coach Pep Guardiola told reporters. "As you all know I never decide the team until the last minute. We'll see how they all are tomorrow."

Iniesta's return means long-term injury victims David Villa and Ibrahim Afellay are the only players unavailable to Guardiola.

Former Barca defender Rafael Marquez, who now plays for the New York Red Bulls, joined his ex-colleagues in the first team squad for Saturday's training session. The Mexican was keeping up his fitness during the MLS close season.

SI Apps
We've Got Apps Too
Get expert analysis, unrivaled access, and the award-winning storytelling only SI can provide - from Peter King, Tom Verducci, Lee Jenkins, Seth Davis, and more - delivered straight to you, along with up-to-the-minute news and live scores.