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Twitter reacts to Antoine Griezmann leaving Atletico Madrid

15 May 2019, 09:28 IST

Club Atletico de Madrid v Sevilla FC - La Liga
Club Atletico de Madrid v Sevilla FC - La Liga

Atletico Madrid star Antoine Griezmann has confirmed that he will leave the club at the end of this season. His next destination is expected to be Ernesto Valverde's Barcelona.

Since his signature from Real Sociedad in 2014, Griezmann has been a talismanic figure for Diego Simeone's Atletico, scoring an incredible 133 times in 256 outings for the Spanish giants. He won the UEFA Europa league with them in the 2017-18 season as well as the UEFA Super Cup, carrying the same form into the 2018 FIFA World Cup for France, lifting the title there as well.

His four goals and two assists at the 2018 World Cup saw him winning the Bronze Ball as the tournament's third-best player behind Luka Modric (Croatia) and Eden Hazard (Belgium) as well as the Silver Boot as the tournament's second-highest top scorer, behind Harry Kane (England). A crowd favourite at the Wanda Metropolitano, Griezmann has contributed 19 goals and 11 assists this season for Atletico across competitions and is his side's top scorer in La Liga, with 15 goals. He has also been the club's top scorer in each of the five seasons he has spent there.

As per the video annouoncement on the star's official twitter handle, a post which has also been retweeted by Atletico Madrid's official twittter page, the star remarked:

"It has been five incredible years; thank you very much for everything, I take you in the heart.
"I wanted to tell the fans who have always given me a lot of love that I have taken the decision to leave, to see other things, to have other challenges. The truth is it has been difficult to take this route but it is what I feel I need and I would like to thank all of you for the love you have shown me during these five years." 

The mercurial Frenchman had signed a five-year contract with Atletico last June but has communicated that this Saturday's final La Liga fixture against Levante will be his last for the club.

Griezmann is widely expected to confirm a move to La Liga champions Barcelona soon, having rejected the Blaugrana last season. Fans on Twitter were quick to react on the move, with Barcelona fans split between rejoicing over the move and lamenting that someone younger was not targeted. Atletico fans were also divided, with many thanking the player for his services and wishing him well, while others called him out for moving for the big money, therefore foregoing club loyalty.

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