Antoine Griezmann begs for ‘forgiveness’ from Atletico Madrid fans over his £108m move to Barcelona in 2019 – a year after pledging his future to Atleti in controversial La Decision documentary
- Antoine Griezmann has asked Atletico fans for forgiveness after move to Barca
- The French striker sealed a permanent move back to Madrid in £21million deal
- Griezmann had angered fans with documentary on his decision to leave the club
- The forward scored the winner in Atletico’s win over Athletic Club this weekend
Antoine Griezmann has begged the Atletico Madrid fans for forgiveness following his permanent move back to the club from Barcelona.
The forward had re-joined Atletico on loan from the Catalan side last year, but has been recently restricted to 30-minute cameos from the bench down to a clause in his contract.
The Madrid club would be liable to pay Barcelona a £35million fee for the Frenchman, if he had played in 45 minutes or more in 80 per cent of the matches for which he was available over the two-year period.
Antoine Griezmann has begged Atletico Madrid fans for forgiveness after rejoining the club
The deal is worth up to £21million, just three years after he moved the other for for £107m
However, this week the two clubs finally agreed a deal worth up to £21million for the 31-year-old to make the permanent switch back to the Metropolitano Stadium.
Griezmann celebrated the move by bagging the winner for Atletico in their 1-0 win over Athletic Club on Saturday, and after the game used the opportunity to send a message to the fans.
Speaking to Dairio AS Griezmann said: ‘Very proud to have been able to renew and be completely an Atletico.
Griezmann celebrates scoring the winner for Atletico in their 1-0 victory over Athletic Bilbao
The Spanish side announced the highly-anticipated permanent deal on social media last week
In the end I want to ask for forgiveness, I know that the people want to hear it from my mouth: I ask for forgiveness for the damage I might have done to the people, but the biggest forgiveness that I want to ask for is on the pitch, giving everything and with nights like tonight.
We are on the path to follow, in spite of not being able to beat Brugge.’
The apology comes in the wake of Griezmann’s behaviour during his initial move to Barcelona in 2019. Where the French star made the decision to leave Atletico so public after first using the La Decision documentary to reject Barca, before moving to the Nou Camp a year later.
Griezmann says that he only wanted to move back to Atletico when he left Barca in 2021
There was also a dispute between the two clubs over the release fee for the Euro 2016 Golden Boot winner, that saw Atletico complain to LaLiga after they believed Griezmann had agreed to join Barca before the clause was lowered.
He scored 35 goals for Barcelona after joining the club for £107million, but struggled to hold down a regular starting birth for the Catalans. The striker said he only wanted to return to Atletico upon leaving the Nou Camp, where he is currently the club’s fourth highest goal-scorer.
The fee received is a major boost for Barcelona – despite the £86 million loss on the forward – who have been dealing with major financial struggles, and had to engineer ways to register their recent wrath of summer signings that didn’t break the limitations of FFP.