Antoine Griezmann has started this new season involved in a conflict between Atlético de Madrid and FC Barcelona due to an opposite understanding in the contract they have signed for the player. A financial war from the offices that is influencing the action on the field as well and that forces the Frenchman to always start from the bench in every single game and just play from the 60th minute on with no exception.
Barcelona threaten, which is not the same than actually doing it, to lawsuit Atlético, as they consider that the agreed conditions, which indicate that Atlético must pay for the buy clause (40 million euros) if Griezmann plays at least the 50% of the minutes in the games he is available to take part in, were only applicable in the first season of loan, that is to say, last campaign, where he participated in more than 80% of the time he was available to do so.
This way, and based on on this theory, Griezmann already totally belongs to Atlético de Madrid. However, Atlético themselves are totally certain that this second year of loan also includes the quantity of minutes that the Frenchman gets to play.
But the reality here is that, beyond how far each club decides to go on this issue (the common sense asks for a negotiation with a settle price for the transfer for the benefit of all parties), Griezmann is one of the players that is standing out the most at Atlético. One of the best players that the team has currently on the field.
We do not know contract wise, but based on his feelings, Griezmann has clearly lined up with Atlético and their coach, Diego Pablo Simeone, and he certainly feels ‘Rojiblanco‘. That is something obvious.
A player on loan but at the service of the club who is willing to fix all his sins from the past at any cost and to contribute to the entity in order to pay his financial debt, due to the excessive price they would have to pay for him on a potential transfer; and the fans, for the media circus that he set up when he started to prepare his exit to Barcelona at the beginning of 2019, and the previous documentary he launched back in 2018.
“I feel a club’s man. I am happy here and i only want to play here. Give it all for El Cholo, the club and the fans”, he said after the epic win in the Champions League versus Porto thanks to a last-minute header by him. His position is clear, he is on Atlético’s side.
We all know his story since he left, with his both individual and collective failure at Barcelona afterwards, and his controversial return with a worrying drop in his performing that made people at the Metropolitano to booe him constantly every game.
But we must also remind you, just like Cholo constantly does that, apart from his behaviour, if we strictly talk about his quality and contribution to the team, he is one of the best players that has ever played for Atlético de Madrid throughout their history. His multiple top performances and, specially, his numbers (144 goals and 50 assists) prove that.
There is still plenty of people who reproach him the way he left, but it is clear that Griezmann has already paid (and still is) for all the mistakes since he decided to leave Atlético, his perfect ecosystem.
He has experienced a torture at Barcelona for two seasons and now he is condemned to accept a secondary role that is not based on the level he has shown so far into the start of the new season. Furthermore, he has not protested at all and we must also take into account that the World Cup is just two months away. If this is not to admit and try to fix the mess he set up himself, I do not know what else he must do.
Griezmann is perfectly aware that he made a mistake, just like we all do in life, and he is working hard t fix it. And with his attitude towards the forced role that he has been assigned and his contribution on the field during the minutes that the club can afford to let him play, he is certainly providing an outstanding performing.
Griezmann, at least feeling wise, is an ‘Atlético’ and his value as a footballer for this team is still very high.
Main image: @Atleti.