The Barcelona captain have scored just one goal this season since the transfer request was handing in August.

Leo Messi should prove that he’s still committed for Barca

Rivaldo believes Lionel Messi could make a statement of intent during Saturday’s Clasico at Camp Nou. The Barcelona captain have scored just one goal this season since the transfer request was handing in August. Messi has an outstanding record against Real Madrid, scoring 26 times in 41 Clasico appearances for Barcelona. It means that he sits at the top of the rating charts in the history of the fixture. “El Clásico on Saturday is the perfect opportunity for Lionel Messi to prove that he remains committed for Barcelona,” Rivaldo said. “He had a tough summer, and has not started the season brilliantly, but this is the perfect game to raise his game and prove that he is still an exceptional player. A match-winning display against Madrid would boost his confidence for the rest of the season.

Real Madrid are in bad shape

“The match is also a chance for Barcelona to dump the pressure on Real Madrid. They are in bad shape and have lost their last two games – both at home. Mind you, Barcelona were beaten last weekend in LaLiga by Getafe. “I said at the start of the season that Madrid will have an advantage over Barcelona after crowning LaLiga champions and having a quiet preseason. But now Barcelona have a chance to respond by sending Madrid into an unexpected crisis with three straight losses. “On the other hand, Real Madrid will approach El Clásico as a chance to keep up with their poor results. Once again, we should see a very passionate match, even without the fans in the stands.” In his column, Rivaldo also offered his opinion on the chances of compatriot Vinicius Junior to start Saturday’s game at the Camp Nou.

“It was strange to see how Zinedine Zidane changed his starting 11 a lot for the Champions League midweek match against Shakhtar Donetsk. He ended up paying for that, as the Ukrainians beat Madrid,” Rivaldo added. “Vinicius jumped off the bench to score straight away and give Madrid hope. But it was too late to reverse a three-goal deficit. Zidane makes the mistake of playing Vinicius off the bench so often. Right now, the young Brazilian is the most dangerous player in the Madrid squad. He has proven his quality. He doesn’t need to learn from the bench but develop on the field to become more dangerous and influential. Zidane needs to bring him back to the starting 11 against Barcelona.”