FC Barcelona News

Antoine Griezmann Heaps Praise on Lionel Messi; Denies Rift Rumours

Antoine Griezmann has denied rumours of a rift with Lionel Messi
Antoine Griezmann has denied rumours of a rift with Lionel Messi / Soccrates Images/Getty Images

Antoine Griezmann heaped praises on his Barcelona team-mate, Lionel Messi, and brushed off claims of a rift, insisting that the Argentine is so easy to play with it's as if he can turn a "melon" into "caviar."

There have been rumours in the past claiming the pair shared a strenuous relationship since Griezmann joined Barca from Atletico Madrid in 2019. The Frenchman's uncle even hit out at Messi last year, while the player's former advisor slammed Messi's "deplorable attitude" towards Griezmann.

Eric Olhats accused Messi of being a bad influence off the pitch at Camp Nou. He told France Football: "Antoine arrived in a struggling club where Messi has a view on everything. He’s at the same time emperor and monarch, and he didn’t see Antoine’s arrival with a good eye. His attitude has been deplorable, he made him feel that. I’ve always heard Antoine say there’s no problem with Messi, but never the other way around."

However, Griezmann has brushed off all speculation about a rift and told L'Equipe: "[Our relationship is] good. We get along well. We sometimes write messages to each other, we communicate a lot in training. On the pitch, he's obviously a super easy player to play with. You send him a melon, he turns it into caviar! We don't have that pressure to miss a pass with him.

"In the game, things get better and better. This year, it was a bit complicated because we had a lot of injuries and we played in a system where everyone was not necessarily in their best position. But we are going to start a new season with new recruits, it will go better."

The 30-year-old did go on to admit that during his first two years at the club, he was disappointed at times for not being seen as a first-choice player. He added: "Yes. When you lose the league, for example, it makes me sad.

"At the start of the season too, because I wasn't playing, I didn't feel important. I am used to playing every game, the big matches. I found myself on the bench against Real Madrid (a 3-1 loss in October 2020). It made me mad to see my team-mates warming up on the pitch while you're next to it. But these are the coach's choices and you have to accept them and do everything possible to change his mind."