The Blaugrana legend sees similarities between the Frenchman’s struggles and those of Philippe Coutinho, but believes the striker will come good

Antoine Griezmann’s struggles at Barcelona mirror those endured by Philippe Coutinho at Camp Nou, admits Rivaldo, but it is considered to be too early for the Blaugrana to be mulling over a sale.

A protracted transfer saga eventually delivered the France international forward to Catalunya during the summer of 2019.

Having been on Barca’s radar for some time, World Cup winner Griezmann finally got his move as the reigning La Liga champions sought even more inspiration alongside Lionel Messi and Luis Suarez in the final third of the field.

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With the ranks having been raided at domestic rivals Atletico Madrid, adjusting to the demands of life in new surroundings was not expected to be a problem for a proven frontman.

Griezmann has, however, registered only 14 goals through 37 appearances this season, with much more demanded from him.

It has been suggested that Barca may be tempted to part with the 28-year-old if a suitable offer arrives, as they prepare to rekindle their interest in Paris Saint-Germain star Neymar, but Rivaldo believes patience needs to be shown with a player who clearly has more to offer.

The Blaugrana legend told Betfair: “Many Barca fans were expecting much more from Antoine Griezmann in his first season at Barcelona, especially without Coutinho as well as Luis Suarez and Ousmane Dembele due to injury. But I don’t believe it’s time to start thinking of selling the player.

“A world champion, who is well-adapted to Spanish football after his time at Atletico Madrid, would be expected to make a bigger impact at Camp Nou. But Griezmann is still capable of making the difference, especially in Lionel Messi’s absence, so we must wait and see if he can get adapt to Barca’s system. Griezmann has the quality to succeed at the club.

“His first season is reminding me of Coutinho’s. Both were playing great football when they arrived at the club but didn’t manage to replicate it at Barcelona. I think he needs to dedicate himself a little bit more to truly produce his best football and become a decisive member of Quique Setien’s team.”

Barca did move to bolster their attacking ranks in February when snapping up Martin Braithwaite in an emergency transfer completed outside of the set windows.

The Denmark international is considered to be a short-term fix, with there already talk of him being moved on at the next opportunity, and Rivaldo admits the 28-year-old is going to find it difficult to prove himself worthy of an extended stay.

The Brazilian added: “Barca’s late signing Martin Braithwaite has recently arrived at the club and was starting to earn some minutes before La Liga gets suspended.

“He arrived to replace Luis Suarez and Ousmane Dembele and needs to have more opportunities soon to convince his new manager and fans.

“This pause in La Liga isn’t beneficial for his career as he could have less time to consolidate himself – especially because Suarez is having more time to recover – and next season he could also have Coutinho fighting for a place in the starting 11.

“If he didn’t manage to play regularly in the next few months he could end up being forgotten as better players will come and he could never had the same chances that he would have now to perform as an important role at Barcelona squad.”

La Liga is among those divisions to have shut down amid the coronavirus pandemic, with it unclear when competitive action will resume as competitions around the world seek to play the 2019-20 campaign to a conclusion.

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