Diego Simeone responds to concerns over Antoine Griezmann’s minutes

Diego Simeone responds to concerns over Antoine Griezmann’s minutes

Atletico Madrid manager Diego Simeone has vowed he must do what is best for the club in relation to Antoine Griezmann’s diminished role this season.

The Frenchman is half-way through a two-year loan from Barcelona which will be made permanent if certain conditions are met, one of which is understood to involve his minutes during this second season.

Reports in Spain state that Atletico must buy Griezmann permanently from Barcelona if he plays 45 minutes in at least half of the team’s games this season, and despite being a near-permanent starter last season, the 31-year-old is yet to play more than half an hour in any of Atleti’s three games this year.

Even with his limited minutes, Griezmann has still managed two goals for Los Rojiblancos.

When asked about Griezmann’s situation, Simeone refused to go into any details, instead issuing a cryptic response.

“They have known me for ten years as a coach. I am a club man and always will be.”

Earlier in the press conference, Simeone was asked about the limited roles handed to a number of players. Alongside Griezmann, the likes of Matheus Cunha and Angel Correa have been restricted to substitute roles this season, and Simeone insisted this was all to help the club.

“You have to try make them understand that playing 30 minutes well is more important than playing 60 badly,” the boss said. “Everyone wants to play more minutes and that is why the coaches look for the best situations for the team.”

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