Madrid, Sep 5 (IANS) Atletico Madrid striker Antoine Griezmann has committed his future to the capital football club, but at the same time linked his future to that of chief coach Diego Simeone.
The 25-year-old Frenchman, who was the top scorer in this summer’s European Championship, signed a new contract with Atletico over the summer, tying him to the club until the summer of 2021 and raising his buy-out clause to 100 million euros (around $110 million), reports Xinhua.
However, as Manchester United’s purchase of his international teammate Paul Pogba showed, this summer a $110 million buyout clause is not necessarily an impediment to some of the richest clubs in England and in the past few days the UK press have linked United to interest in Griezmann.
Speaking to ‘Telefoot’ Griezmann said he was happy to stay at Atletico, but also said the main reason for staying was to continue working with his current Argentine coach Simeone.
“I called him before signing my contract and he confirmed that he was staying. It was important for me to know I would be at a club where the coach had confidence in me,” commented the striker who has been playing for Atletico since 2014.
“I am happy in Spain and I can still learn a lot from Simeone, I would only have doubts if he went to Paris Saint Germain or elsewhere,” he added.
“If I am carrying on here it is because I want to work with Simeone. I would be very upset if he left,” the former Real Sociedad forward continued in words which will not have done a lot to reassure Atletico supporters.
Griezmann has scored 57 goals in 104 matches for Atletico, who finished third in the 2014-15 and 2015-16 seasons of La Liga. Griezmann also fired Atletico to 2015-16 UEFA Champions League final.