There were too many questions on Antoine Griezmann's perceived struggle to shine in Barcelona. The French forward joined up in 2019 but the impressive form he displayed while in Atletico Madrid appeared difficult to summon these days. The star offered up some explanations.
Griezmann admitted fitting in was hard when he made the switch last year. There were a host of factors why the 29-year-old found it hard to replicate the success that characterized his Atletico career. The Frenchman allowed it was not easy to adjust.
First, the expectations were high and it was understandable. Griezmann had a good run with Diego Simeone's side and Barcelona had started on its 2019 campaign to defend the La Liga crown. The pressure was on him and Griezmann said the changes that happened around him made things even harder.
"In a year and a half, I have had three coaches [at Barcelona]. 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," Griezmann explained, and per the report by Marca.
He added that he anticipated the rush of critical views on his performance, and the star relented that fans and pundits alike have yet to see the Griezmann they expected. His best version is not yet seen starring for the Catalan giants, the forward said.
Also, Griezmann addressed the suggestion that he is not getting along with his captain Lionel Messi. The Argentine gave his support to Barcelona's plan to sign the former Atletico star in 2018 but the transfer was delayed for a year, and according to the World Cup winner, he and Messi talked about him coming in.
The six-time Ballon d'Or winner made clear he was disappointed that Griezmann failed to sign with Barca earlier but he insisted he is supportive of the France international. Griezmann stressed he has no issue with Messi and he convinced the captain is happy with his presence at the club.
Goal reported that Griezmann has dismissed the claims made by his former agent Eric Olhats and an uncle identified in media reports as Emmanuel Lopes. The two said Messi is making life difficult for Griezmann at Barcelona but the star himself stressed that Olhats and Lopes know any better.
For one, Lopes is not truly well-versed in football and Griezmann said what his uncle said were innocent comments. The man doesn't know how exactly football works, he added.
The Barcelona star did admit that Olhats played an important role in his life but that was in the past. Griezmann said he is no longer in touch with his former agent and made clear that the words coming from the man will only serve to damage his relationship with his Barcelona teammates.
Olhats was invited to Griezmann's wedding but the agent failed to show up and from that day, "I stopped having a relationship with him."