The Frenchman consolidates his new role in the red and white team while approaching Luis Aragonés’ historical scoring record
“I knew I was born to play in the Atlético de Madrid“he said this Wednesday Diego Pablo Simeone about Antoine Griezmann after the mattress rout against Celtic. Although, in reality, what Cholo wanted to say was something like “I knew he was born to play at my command.” But, of course, he wasn’t going to say it that way.
Simeone, it is fair to remember it precisely now, was practically the only one who believed in the Frenchman’s return to the Metropolitan just over two years ago, so painful emotionally, so complex financially, even so risky in sports, since its flame had gone out in that depressive Barcelona. And his then 30 years, after having been in the elite since he was 18, did not predict a possible return to his peak.
And Griezmann, aware of the doubts and rejection that accompanied his return home, also responsible for Simeone’s unconditional support, shouldered the challenge of being again. the leader of Atlético which at the time it had been. After two or so seasons since his return to the Metropolitano, one can only conclude that the challenge has been more than met.
Griezmann is the soul of this Atlético, after completing a new reinvention. He is not the flashy winger who broke into Real Sociedad, nor the second striker who broke out at Atlético, nor the indeterminate attacker who wandered around Barcelona. He is a 4.0 version of itselfincreasingly closer to the creation zone, increasingly more of a midfielder.
“You must learn. You catch the tricks that players do. I believe that everything can always be improved. In the League there are very good midfielders and we are learning,” he said this Wednesday, back in the midfield this season for Atlético, once the recovery of Angel Correa He has granted that alternative to Simeone to accompany top scorer Morata at the top of the attack.
In France, it has long been Didier Deschamps has opted to delay its position. In fact, in the Qatar World Cupand despite his poor performance in the final against Argentina, he was one of the best midfielders of the tournament, if not the best of them all, exhibiting his ability to sacrifice and his tactical intelligence to cover the appropriate spaces in defensive work.
Griezmann’s scoring record
“In the end it is a position in the middle in which you need steal balls, assist, reach the area and in the end, what I get. Whether it’s midfield, forward or playmaker, I try to do what everyone should do in that position and I’m learning by watching a lot of football on TV. Whatever it takes for the club and for Cholo,” continued the French footballer after overwhelming Celtic, to which he contributed with two goals.
The data from the 2022/23 season shows that Griezmann, beyond the preparation of the plays, shows that He is more effective as a midfielder than as a forward. According to Transfermarkt records, he scored seven goals and gave seven assists in both roles, but he played 17 games as a midfielder and 19 as a striker.
“Comparisons are not good, but for what he has left to go, Antoine will be one of the best players in the club’s history,” Simeone said of him after the victory against Celtic. And he is right, because that is what the data says. He is already the third top scorer in Atlético’s history and is barely separated by one goal. Adrian Escudero and three of Luis Aragoneswho with 172 points has held the record since 1975. Numbers, without a doubt, legendary.