The message at Barcelona is clear: sign new players, now.
The gulf in class between Barça and Real Madrid was apparent during the Spanish Super Cup, in which Los Blancos cruised to a 5-1 victory on aggregate.
Real followed up Sunday’s 3-1 victory at the Camp Nou with a straightforward 2-0 win in front of their own fans on Wednesday evening.
And Cristiano Ronaldo featured for less than 30 minutes across both legs. That’s incredibly telling.
It’s hard to see Barça keeping up with Zinedine Zidane’s side this season and Gerard Pique acknowledged his team’s struggles after the match.
"In the nine years I've been [at Barca], it's the first time I feel inferior to Madrid," Pique told reporters, per ESPN.
"We're not having our best time as a team or a club. We should all be as close to each other as possible and move forward.
"We must live with this defeat and accept that Madrid are better than us [at the moment], but the season's very long and there's room for improvement."
PSG trolled Barcelona on Twitter
It’s unlikely Barça won’t spent a large chunk of the €222 million they received by selling Neymar to Paris Saint-Germain before the transfer window shuts. On last night’s evidence, they simply have to.
And it seems PSG are thoroughly enjoying watching Barcelona struggle right now.
While Ernesto Valverde’s side were going down in the Bernabeu, the French club posted two tweets that both included images of Neymar and Dani Alves - both former Barcelona players.
The fact that one of the images depicts Neymar laughing shows PSG’s social media team probably knew what they were doing.
Check out the tweets below.
It seems PSG have forgotten all about their humiliating 6-1 defeat to Barça at the Camp Nou earlier in the year, then.
Valverde: We need to win
Barça boss Valverde, who replaced Luis Enrique in May, admitted that his side have been rocked by a preseason which included Neymar departure.
"You will always encounter difficulties [in football]," Valverde said.
"In three days you can run into trouble. There were things that happened in preseason that affected the balance within the team, things which we must correct, or work on to find another balance.
"There is nothing else to do than recover our spirits now and look forward. What we need to do is win. Everything changes with a victory."
Indeed. And Barça’s hopes of winning will improve if they sign Ousmane Dembele and Philippe Coutinho.
How many players must Barcelona sign in the transfer window? Let us know in the comments section below!
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