Antoine Griezmann insists he does not regret the ‘Decision’ documentary that revealed he was rejecting Barcelona last year and is convinced he can repair any damage caused with his efforts on the pitch for the Blaugrana.
Barca had been strongly linked with a move for Griezmann in 2018 and were even reported to have struck an agreement with him, as Atletico reported the Catalan club to FIFA at the end of 2017.
The prolonged saga reached its conclusion with a documentary following Griezmann as he made up his mind about whether to move or stay in Madrid, with the clip produced by Gerard Pique’s production company.
In the end he revealed his choice was to remain and sign a new five-year contract at Atletico, but 13 months later he became a Barca player after his €120million release clause was triggered by the LaLiga champions on Friday.
Griezmann received significant criticism for the documentary and he was asked about it in his presentation news conference at Camp Nou on Sunday.
“I’ve done some bad things in my past and I’ve never regretted it because it’s something I wanted to do at the time,” he told reporters.
— FC Barcelona (@FCBarcelona) 14 July 2019
I wanted to show what is not seen and I have not toyed with both parties. The most important thing is that we are now together. You have to ask for forgiveness, for some it will be on the field.”
When asked whether Luis Suarez and Lionel Messi could be annoyed with him, he added: “They could be, but I think that with the assistance that I can give them, we can fix everything.”
Given the fairly short amount of time between rejecting Barca and then joining them, many have wondered why there was a change of heart, particularly given he signed a five-year deal with Atletico last year.
For Griezmann it is simple – he was not ready to make such a step in 2018.
“I have a family to move,” he said. “I saw my wife, my world, and I was not ready to take the step, and this year has been different.
“It’s always difficult to leave a home where we felt comfortable with family and friends, it was difficult. I only have admiration and respect for Atletico.
“I wanted a new challenge, to try to improve myself, not be comfortable. I look for my place in a great club and try to win the three titles.”