Barcelona have made their intentions clear on what path the club wants to go in the coming years. In just the current transfer window, the likes of Ivan Rakitic, Arturo Vidal and Luis Suarez have all been let go.
And the message is clear: apart from Lionel Messi, everyone else is dispensable and it doesn't matter how influential they have been in the past.
That was the case of Suarez, who officially departed the Camp Nou on Friday to start a new adventure at Atletico Madrid.
For a player who scored 198 goals and contributed over 100 more in assists, he is definitely not finished. At age 33, the striker might be in the twilight of his career but he’s still got a lot to offer.
Barcelona have often been criticised for many footballing blunders in recent years and the Suarez sale could be one of those. This is because the former Liverpool star, in current form, would still command a starting place in most top European teams.
Little wonder, therefore, that Atletico Madrid have moved in quickly to snap him up. They know the value of the world class striker they have gotten, who is the only player in the last decade to have beaten Cristano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi to the European Golden Shoe.
And he beat them twice, first at Liverpool and again at Barcelona. Suarez will definitely guarantee goals for Diego Simeone’s side, who has been signed as replacement for Alvaro Morata, who also recently moved to Juventus.
The Uruguayan is definitely an upgrade on Morata. So while Atletico have strengthened their squad with a truly world class forward, Barcelona have rather lost a key player.
Even worse, the Blaugrana are not close to making any signings in the forward areas, which means that there are no replacements to take Suarez's place. Add that to the departures of Rakitic and Vidal and it leaves Barca with a very thin squad for the season.
There are reports that Barcelona manager Ronald Koeman intends to use Ansu Fati as his new no. 9. While that may be a brilliant idea in theory, the reality is that Fati is still young and is not ready to lead the attack of a huge club like Barcelona for a 60-plus game season.
It is, therefore, clear that Barcelona are the losers in this transfer saga and Atletico Madrid can only thank their stars for getting such a talented striker who would definitely boost the team’s chances both in La Liga and in Europe.Published 26 Sep 2020, 22:03 IST