This article is part of Football FanCast’s In Numbers series, which takes a statistical look at performances, season-long form and reported transfer targets…
Antoine Griezmann was Barcelona’s big-money signing over the summer transfer window.The Catalans activated the Frenchman’s €120m (£106.6m) release clause, snatching him away from Atletico Madrid.
Griezmann was a huge presence within Diego Simeone’s system.
After all, he was their top scorer in La Liga every season since he joined the team from Real Sociedad. That little information by itself already tells enough about his contribution to the Rojiblancos.
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But at Barcelona, Griezmann is so far just a shadow of his former self.
And sure, he scored three goals and assisted two in the nine games he has played for the Blaugrana across all competitions but two of those goals and one assist came from the same game against Real Betis.
Apart from that, he has been rather lacklustre, to say the least.
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The latest venture, one against Inter Milan in the Champions League, was, unfortunately, another game in which the Frenchman totally disappeared and had little to no impact on the game, leaving it all to the likes of Lionel Messi and Luis Suarez.
Griezmann tallied one key pass, one shot on target and just 35 accurate passes. The most concerning of all, however, is the stat that says the 28-year-old only registered 47 touches on the night, fourth-lowest in the team and that’s when counting the goalkeeper and one sub who came on in the 65th minute.
Not to mention that Griezmann lost possession seven times throughout the clash and was clearly not comfortable out wide on the left flank.
And this is exactly what seems to be the problem and it’s something we already discussed in detail before this game – Griezmann is not a winger and is currently being wasted out wide.
There’s no denying that he has quality and at the moment, that seems like the only thing that’s keeping him afloat at Barcelona.
But just like Philippe Coutinho before him, he’s being played out of position and is in danger of going down the same route as the Brazilian, who is now, as a result of his subpar performances, out on loan at Bayern Munich.
Of course, this is only the beginning of Griezmann’s career in Catalonia but this performance should be cause for major concern for Ernesto Valverde.