Griezmann had previously earned praise for pledging himself to Atletico through difficult times for the club, refusing to leave during a transfer ban and agreeing to a new contract. He even marked the occasion with an announcement that read, ‘My fans, my team, MY HOME!’
Griezmann was on the winning team in an Atletico v Barcelona match. 👍 pic.twitter.com/GXMswxbBZd— 90min (@90min_Football) December 2, 2019
Yet it was little more than a year later when he was unveiled as a Barcelona player, with the Catalans triggering a buyout clause that had fallen from €200m to €120m just days earlier.
Atletico filed a formal complaint about the fee, insisting that the deal had been secretly agreed between the player and his new club in March, claiming that Barcelona were obliged to pay the higher €200m based on the timing of the agreement.
VÍDEO. Apareixen ‘rates’ de joguina a la placa de Griezmann davant el Wanda Metropolitano. pic.twitter.com/b9C3aMgefn— LaTdT (@LaTdT) December 1, 2019
Eventually, the Catalans were fined a paltry sum of €300, while Griezmann himself was absolved any responsibility for his part by the Spanish federation.
The whole saga has left a sour taste in the mouth for Atletico and their fans.
A plaque in honour of Griezmann's service outside the stadium was adorned with toy rats prior to kick off, something which has previously happened with former Colchoneros stopper Thibaut Courtois who joined Real Madrid.
During the game, Atletico fans were also warned via a PA announcement not to engage in offensive singing, but a section continued to chant ‘Griezmann die’. The club could be sanctioned as a result.
#AtletiBarça Han pedido por megafonía del Wanda Metropolitano que no griten ni canten insultos y se sigue cantando desde cierta parte de la grada "Griezmann muérete"— Carrusel Deportivo (@carrusel) December 1, 2019
Veremos la sanción
Griezmann started the game and played the full 90 minutes. But he has struggled for his best form since moving to Catalonia and hasn’t scored in La Liga since October.
In all competitions, his tally of just five goals and three assists in 18 appearances is a source of disappointment.