Atletico Madrid head into the clash with Barcelona in the knowledge that a victory puts them right back into the Spanish title race, however without Antoine Griezmann’s return threatening to overshadow the match itself, Diego Simeone has made clear that the Frenchman’s history speaks for itself.
It’s expected that the former Atletico forward will receive a harsh welcome from home supporters on his first visit back to the Estadio Wanda Metropolitano.
“Griezmann’s history and numbers speak for themselves, I don’t need to add anything,” Simeone explained in his pre-match press conference.
“I won’t talk about Griezmann because he plays for another team.
“What people do is their decision, I was always clear about what I thought of him when I worked with him.”
Joao Felix was on the receiving end of a Simeone tirade last weekend, with the Portuguese forward seemingly unaware he was supposed to be on the left, yet the former River Plate coach will start him against Los Cules.
“He is getting better,” he added.
“The progression we were talking about before the Granada match came as a result of it.
“He will surely start from the beginning, and we shall see if that’s on the wing or alongside Alvaro.”
It’s been noted that Simeone’s record against the Blaugrana is far better in the Champions League than in LaLiga Santander, but he believes whatever the competition a visit from the Catalan giants is always a tough test.
“I always see it as a difficult match, they are a strong rival,” he intimated.
“We have two players out, and last year we also had injuries.
“We have different responses to see what scenarios they create for us.”