Antoine Griezmann has given an interview to Universo Valdano where’s he talked about life at Barcelona, the difficulties he’s had and his relationship with captain Lionel Messi.
The Frenchman explained that when he arrived he asked for forgiveness, for turning the club down the previous summer, and also spoke with Messi straight away.
“I spoke with Leo when I arrived and he told me that when I turned down the first chance to go, he was screwed because he had asked for it publicly, but he told me he was with me and I notice it every day.“
Griezmann also responded to recent critical comments about Messi by his former adviser Eric Olhats and his uncle Emmanuel Lopes. The World Cup winner distanced himself from both men and explained how rarely he speaks to either.
“[Olhats was very important in my life but I don’t have a relationship with him anymore. I stopped having any relationship with him since the day I got married. I invited him to the wedding day, and he didn’t come. That’s why I stopped having a relationship with him.
“My uncle doesn’t know how football works. And in the end, the journalist ended up getting the statement out of him. I told Leo that I never speak to them, in fact, I don’t even have my uncle’s phone number. My parents don’t talk to Eric either, so who is going to talk to him? He can do a lot of damage, and create problems in the dressing room.”
The forward also went on to discuss his form at the club and the criticism he has received for his performances since joining from Atletico in summer 2019 after Barcelona activated his 120 million release clause.
“I accept it [criticism] because I know that we are not seeing the best Griezmann but I understand that every time something else comes out I am the first one to be [criticised].
“In a year and a half, I have had three coaches. That’s not easy. I need time to adapt to my colleagues and they to me. And on top of that there are formation changes. In addition, the candidates for the presidency also talk about me. I don’t think it’s the best thing for me when they talk about whether I’m a good signing or not.”
There will be plenty of focus on Griezmann tonight against Dynamo Kiev. Messi has been left at home for the Champions League game, giving Griezmann the perfect opportunity to shine in attack for Ronald Koeman’s side.