If Barcelona have aspirations of winning the Champions League this season, they need their attacking trident of Lionel Messi, Luis Suarez and Antoine Griezmann to be at their absolute best.
An effective front three is something that has been lacking at Barcelona this season, with two different coaches trying to find the right formula and only succeeding on a few occasions.
Quique Setien opted for a 4-4-2 formation against Villarreal towards the end of the season, with Suarez and Griezmann up top and Messi just behind them and this was successful, but if they can’t consistently perform like they did that day then Champions League glory will be impossible.
Although he once again won the Pichichi, Messi has scored fewer goals this season and the team have dropped points in games where they wouldn’t be expected to.
The team has netted less than they usually do, even if they finished with the highest goal tally in the league.
Between injury and the coronavirus break, Suarez hasn’t been able to play consistently enough and has had his poorest season in a Barcelona shirt to date, scoring only 19, but the club are hoping to have him at his best for the Champions League.
However, the Uruguayan has gone almost five years without scoring away from home in Europe, which has meant responsibility has fallen almost entirely on the shoulders of Messi.
Relying so heavily on Messi has been a big problem for the Blaugrana because it has meant that when the Argentine isn’t quite at his best then Barcelona struggle.
Although Griezmann is injured at the moment, he is expected to be fit for the clash against Napoli on August 8.
The Frenchman hasn’t played consistently this year and has often been played out of position, which has had an effect of his performance, but he has the talent and could make a difference when Champions League football returns.