ATLÉTICO MADRID

"Congratulations to CR7, but for me Griezmann was the best"

Speaking on Friday, Atlético Madrid boss Diego Simeone gave his opinion on Antoine Griezmann being beaten to the Best Player in Europe award.

"Congratulations to CR7, but for me Griezmann was the best"
PEPE ANDRES DIARIO AS

Atlético Madrid coach Diego Simeone spoke to the media on Friday ahead of his side's LaLiga week two clash with newly-promoted Leganés (Saturday, 22:15 CEST).

Did Cristiano Ronaldo deserve the Best Player in Europe award?

"Whenever guys win these awards it's deserved. My congratulations to Ronaldo. Success as a team strengthens individual achievements, so certainly winning the Champions League and the European Championship has helped put him up there. But for me the best player [last season] without doubt was [Antoine] Griezmann."

What are your thoughts on your Champions League draw?

"The Champions League is always difficult. I'm happy with the teams we've been drawn against (Bayern Munich, PSV Eindhoven and Rostov); we're a team who find that tough challenges and difficult opponents bring out the best in us, and hopefully we'll continue to show that."

Is goal-shyness a worry?

"In the game against Alavés we created [goal-scoring] situations, more than [in the 1-0 opening-day win] last year against Las Palmas. The team are definitely in good shape, and played with intensity and carved out chances to score goals."

Simeone urges on his team during their 1-1 draw with Alavés in LaLiga week 1.

Griezmann's return

"He's a player who makes the difference; certainly in the top three in the world. Obviously he'll have to go through the normal process of coming up to full speed after coming out of the pre-season period, as is the case for every player."

The sale of Borja Bastón to Swansea City

"We saw [Ángel] Correa, Griezmann, [Fernando] Torres and [Kevin] Gameiro as the four forwards who could offer us a range of alternatives and also goal-scoring potential, so in the face of the decisions that have to be taken, we took this one."

Do you expect any further signings?

"The club is working with us to see whether or not there's anything on the market that could be brought in and would improve the team; getting something done or not depends on that."

What do you expect from Leganés?

"They played a very good match on the opening weekend. They worked very well as a team and had a clear game plan. With patience, organisation and hard work, they got the win [away to Celta Vigo]. Playing at home back in the top flight, which is great for their fans, I expect them to be really up for it."