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‘We knew Griezmann leaving was a possibility’

Atletico Madrid manager Diego Simeone has finally broken his silence about Antoine Griezmann’s decision to leave at the end of the season.

The French forward confirmed earlier this week that he will be leaving the Madrid once the season concludes.

Despite recently signing a new five-year deal, Griezmann will be departing Los Rojiblancos but Simeone only had kind words for the World Cup winner.

“First of all, I am grateful for the footballer that we’ve had. I only have words of gratitude for Griezmann. I love him as a perso,” Simeone said, according to Marca.

“I’ve learned not to judge the decisions of others. It’s your job to have an opinion. You have to give everything without expecting anything back. When someone like Antoine gives his all for us, we’re happy.

“We knew Griezmann leaving was a possibility. I spoke with Antoine before meeting with Miguel Angel [Gil, Atleti’s chief executive] and Andrea [Berta, their sporting director]. I told him what I thought with affection and fondness and this was between us only.

“When you give everything, as Antoine did, we are calm. Antoine is taking a step towards a new place. We have all participated in that growth over these five wonderful years. He is one of the best scorers in our history.

“Players are always looking for important teams, like Lucas Hernandez with Bayern Munich, Barcelona… historically there are better clubs and that growth is sought.” Kickoff

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