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Simeone: "If I was an Atlético fan, I'd do everything possible not to lose Griezmann"

The Atleti coach didn't reveal his XI for tomrrow's visit from Athletic Club but did speak of Griezmann: “When he's in form, he's decisive”


Diego Simeone was keeping his cards close to his chest when asked about his team plans for  tomorrow's visit from Athletic Club.

Every game gives us motivation, says Simeone

Returning to LaLiga after playing in Copenhagen:”Wherever we play and whoever we play, we always have the same enthusiasm. Of course some games turn out better than others but for intensity, desire and enthusiasm it's always the same for us”.

Importance of winning home games in the title race: “We only ever think about our next game. Thinking any further ahead than that and imagining what might be never does any good. Our reality, as always, is the next match”.

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Time to recover

What line-up have you got in mind for the Athletic game? “Even I haven't completely decided on that yet. We'll see how the players get on with their recovery from Thursday's game. We'll see how they are after dinner”.

Differences between Torres and Gameiro: “Fernando's game is more about his positioning. He gives us the chance to exploit lay-offs in and around the box; he also helps out with a lot of defensive work for the team. Gameiro's qualities include his acceleration, his ability to combine with his team mates with quick, short passes in limited spaces and to get past defenders inside the area. Both of them have been important to us for different reasons”.

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El Cholo praise for Griezmann

Griezmann getting better and better: “We have been lucky enough to see a few players dratically improve their game - most recently Lucas, Thomas, Oblak and Gimenez since he came into the team as a young lad, not to mention Saúl. Griezmann Is another player for whom all of the hard work is paying off. And much of it has been down to the coaching staff too - maybe more than the player's own endeavours. The other day, I heard a comment from Correa which caught my attention, he said: 'To play for Atleti you need to be mentally strong'. I think that is perhaps the best summary from a young player who is adapting to a position which isn't his natural position. When he is on song, Griezmann is decisive, he's important when he uses the liberty that he needs and when he is at the top of his game, he always makes the right decisions".

Do Oblak and Costa have a chance of being in the XI?: “Yes, because both of them are in the list".

Griezmann in a tug-of-war with the fans: “I know him because I work with him every day. He's  fantastic lad, he's always upbeat, happy, humble, he has a huge heart. He's someone who adds to the atmosphere in the dressing room and he is always involved. If I was an Atlético fan, I'd do everything possible to make sure Griezmann stays here with us”.


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