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I talk about reality - Simeone ignoring Griezmann speculation

Antoine Griezmann has been tipped to join Barcelona at the end of the season, but Diego Simeone is not giving those rumours much thought.

NEWS
12 Mar 2018, 01:00 IST
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Atletico Madrid striker Antoine Griezmann

Diego Simeone is ignoring the possibility of Antoine Griezmann leaving Atletico Madrid at the end of the season, instead focusing on the in-form Frenchman's contributions for the Rojiblancos.

Griezmann has been strongly linked with an end-of-season move to Barcelona, with some outlets even suggesting the attacker has an agreement with the Catalan club.

He showed precisely why other sides might be interested in him during Sunday's 3-0 win over Celta Vigo, scoring a fine goal and then setting up Vitolo for the second.

It was put to Simeone that he will miss Griezmann when he leaves, but the Atletico coach is ready to accept whatever happens, surmising "tomorrow will be tomorrow".

"I have to talk about realities," Simeone told reporters in his post-match news conference.

"Today he is with us, he plays fantastically well and there is very good togetherness with the fans.

"He scored a great goal, he made the second goal and he worked for the team. This is the reality - tomorrow will be tomorrow."

Vitolo produced a solid display on the left flank and capped his performance with a fine goal, latching on to Griezmann's defence-splitting pass and finishing with a delicate chip over the approaching Ruben Blanco.

It was his first LaLiga goal of the season for Atleti - he spent the first half of the season on loan at Las Palmas - and Simeone believes he is starting to get close to the levels demanded of him after a difficult adaptation.

"He's growing," Simeone said. "Since we became 17 [in terms of the size of his outfield playing squad], everyone has been participating.

"I'm trying to have them all in the best condition so they can contribute when the team needs them to.

"We went looking for a jump in quality, especially in offensive transitions. He is getting closer to what we want and today he made a great goal - a great diagonal run.

"He couldn't play a lot at Las Palmas and it's not easy to integrate quickly into Atletico, but he is trying to do it as quickly as possible."

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