Can Antoine Griezmann make the difference for Barca this year?

Antoine Griezmann

Antoine Griezmann’s arrival to Barcelona created a lot of hype this summer. The French international is one of the best forwards in the world, and his addition to Blaugrana’s lineup no doubt makes the Spanish team even stronger.

The player came from Atletico Madrid for €120 million, which is the fourth most expensive transfer ever. There were a lot of controversies surrounding that deal, and the Meridians are currently appealing to several courts on that matter. But that will be the subject of another article, we are here to talk only about football matters.

Besides Messi, Suarez, Rakitic, Coutinho, Vidal, the upfront of Ernesto Valverde’s lineup is looking pretty terrifying. It is quite possible that Barca now has one of the quickest attacks in the entire world.

However, there are many of those who aren’t thrilled with Griezmann’s addition. They still believe that the Spanish powerhouse isn’t capable of winning the Champions League title and that the unit can only win some domestic trophies. They share the opinion that Barcelona took the wrong star, and that La Liga champions had to strengthen the defensive line. The majority of the bookies see Barcelona as the third favourite for the UCL crown, with the odds offered at 5/1 with Bet365, for example. other betting offers like this one also suggest that Barcelona will win such as 9/2 offered at Betfair and 26/5 at Matchbook.

Now all the above-mentioned makes sense, but it isn’t quite correct.

We all know that Barcelona’s game relies upon pressuring the rival and that the offensive part of the team is much more important in their game. Griezmann is one of the best attackers in the world. He scored 21 goals last season, and over the past five spent in Atletico, had 133 hits.

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When we add that Barca had trouble with the third attacker during the last season, it is obvious that his presence will only make things better. Valverde was trying to find the right partner for Suarez and Messi, but neither Coutinho, Dembele, or any other player could fit in with two superstars. With Griezmann, that surely isn’t going to be the case.

He is the guy whose game could be adjusted to any circumstance and knows to play as a winger, striker or even as the offensive midfielder as we already wrote about that before. That is an additional quality which makes him very valuable. The biggest reason why Barca took Griezmann is his fantastic counter-attack and transition. The Frenchman is probably the best player in the world in that aspect of the game. Atletico’s game relied upon him enormously, and Diego Simeone could set up ultra-defensive tactics knowing that he has a player who needs just a little space to create a chance or even score.

Griezmann is the only player capable of endangering Messi’s La Liga top goalscoring title. The bookies see the Argentinian as the biggest favourite for the Spanish Golden Boot, and the Frenchman is placed right behind him. The odds on Messi are 8/13,  while Barca’s newest addition sits at 11/2, and far behind are Luis Suarez with 10/1, Karim Benzema with 14/1, and Eden Hazard with 15/1.

It is because of this that Barca’s fans don’t have to worry. The lineup might have one midfielder more with defensive characteristics, but in general, the team’s efficiency and sharpness up front will be even higher because of Griezmann. Against Juventus, Manchester City, Liverpool and other Champions League monsters, this is going to be a vital matter.

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So te verdict here is pretty simple – yes, Griezmann will make a difference for Blaugrana this season,


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