Antoine Griezmann "didn’t fit in our system" admits Barcelona president

Barcelona president Joan Laporta has admitted that Antoine Griezmann "didn't fit our system" after the 30-year-old Frenchman left the club on deadline day.

Griezmann has returned to Atletico Madrid on a loan with an option to buy, just two years after leaving the club to join Barcelona in a £108million deal in the summer of 2019.

During his first spell at Atletico, Griezmann scored 133 goals and provided 50 assists in 252 appearances for the club and won the Europa League in 2018.

Laporta returned as Barcelona president to take on the position for a second time earlier this year when he replaced Josep Maria Bartomeu in March.

Speaking to Onze, Laporta said that "I think that everyone was expecting more from him, because he gave everything and didn't have a questionable attitude.

"We know what kind of player he was and is, he's a great player. I think he didn't fit our system, but I think he showed a very good attitude. I sent him a message wishing him well, because he's always had the correct attitude.

"In footballing terms he wasn't the player we needed. He scored goals – I think the one he scored in last year's Copa del Rey that we won was very important – but it's true that he could have given more. But he was under difficult circumstances."

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In his two years with Barcelona, Griezmann made 102 appearances for the club, scoring 35 goals in the process and setting up 17 for his team-mates.

Last season's Copa del Rey was the only trophy he won with Barca, as the club finished 2nd and 3rd in La Liga and were humbled in the Champions League by Bayern Munich and Paris Saint-Germain.

In his first season, Bayern beat Barca 8-2 in the quarter-finals of the Champions League before a Kylian Mbappe-inspired PSG knocked them out in the round of 16 last season.

He now returns to Atletico, who won their first league title in seven years last term and with whom he won three major trophies in his first spell at the club.

Griezmann could make his second Atleti debut on Sunday when they travel to Espanyol in La Liga before hosting Porto in their first Champions League group game next Wednesday.

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