Barcelona made a mistake in not landing a replacement for Luis Suarez in the summer transfer window, says Rivaldo, with the Liga giants warned “it is too late to complain” now.
Ronald Koeman took the bold decision to part with a prolific frontman when taking the managerial reins at Camp Nou.
Suarez was informed that he did not figure in the long-term plans of the Dutch coach, freeing him to find another club.
Atletico Madrid presented the Uruguayan with an opportunity to remain in Spain, meaning that he will be lining up against Barca in 2020-21.
A familiar face could come back to haunt the Blaugrana, as could the decision not to splash out on another proven goalscorer.
Martin Braithwaite has been handed Suarez’s No.9 shirt, with no attacking reinforcements made by Koeman despite links to the likes of Inter frontman Lautaro Martinez and Lyon star Memphis Depay.
Rivaldo told Betfair of transfer dealings in Catalunya: “Barcelona should have made more of an effort to sign a new striker to replace Suarez, especially since they have allowed a player to leave who is still extraordinary and who clearly has the qualities to still be key.
“I'm sure that in many league games, Barcelona have a team that is well ahead of the rest of the teams in the competition. But he [Suarez] will be sorely missed in the Champions League or in those tough matches against Real Madrid, Atletico [Madrid], Sevilla.
“But now it is too late to complain, because the market is closed.”
Barca did spend much of the summer window exploring striking options, but money was always in short supply at Camp Nou.
Departures were required in order to free up funds, and there was not enough movement for incoming deals to get done before the deadline passed.
The Liga giants also faced the unwelcome distraction of talismanic captain Lionel Messi pushing for the exits at one stage, only to then shelve his departure plans and agree to honour his contract.
The Argentine has helped Barca to make a positive start to the 2020-21 campaign, with there still plenty of firepower alongside him in the likes of World Cup Antoine Griezmann and exciting teenager Ansu Fati.