It wasn’t too long ago when Quique Setien was lauding Antoine Griezmann as one of his untouchables.
Effusive in his praise of the Frenchman, his opinion seemed vastly at odds with that of most of the supporters.
His work-rate to this point has saved him because he’s rarely been an attacking threat when played.
Indeed, Ansu Fati coming on ahead of him against was the right call because the youngster does carry an element of danger in his play.
He understands the ‘Barca way,’ which is something that Griezmann still hasn’t come to terms with.
But what happens now? You can’t have a player that cost north of €100m being left to rot on the bench.
For their part, the club have said that the World Cup winner is not for sale at any price, and to Griezmann’s credit, he has said that he has no intention of leaving, being swapped for anyone and wants to fight for his place.
That being the case, then Setien needs to address the imbalance in the XI when Griezmann plays in it.
Assuming that he’s given long enough in the role of course, because Setien’s own removal seems to be a foregone conclusion at this stage.
The Griezmann of Atletico Madrid vintage was a sensational exponent of the attacking art, but things haven’t gone well ever since he released the ill-advised ‘La Decision’ video.
That pseudo-documentary left a very bad taste for many, but also ensured that he would be front and centre when he signed for the blaugranes a year later.
A player of his ilk should be able to deal with life under the spotlight in most games, but the level of scrutiny has really intensified as his form has continued to dip.
We can assume that he will want to go out with a bang in order to assuage the voting public to go with the continuity candidate next summer, however, that means the team has to be successful.
No half measures or excuses, they’ve to hit the ground running and take on all-comers.
Griezmann, therefore, has to be accommodated in his natural role in order to get the best out of him, so if the club aren’t willing to do that and the rest of this season turns into an afterthought for him too, then maybe it’s time he packed his bags.