Joao Felix hits back at Antoine Griezmann after Atletico Madrid criticism

Cameron Smith
Cameron Smith
  • Updated: 1 Dec 2023 22:55 GMT
  • 3 min read
Joao Felix, Barcelona, 2023/24
© ProShots

Barcelona loanee Joao Felix has hit back at criticism from Atletico Madrid stars Antoine Griezmann, Jan Oblak and Saul Niguez as he prepares to face his parent club on Sunday.

Felix, 24, left Atleti to join Barcelona on loan this summer after admitting it was his dream to play for the Camp Nou side.

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He had previously spent the second half of last season on loan at Chelsea after falling out of favour under Diego Simeone.

The Portugal international’s temporary exit from Atletico Madrid this summer has yielded his best form since moving to Spain, and his former team-mates have not held back with their criticism of the 24-year-old.

What has been said?

Griezmann, who has arguably been one of the world’s best players so far this season, told Movistar+, via Diario AS: “In the end, when you get here, you know more or less what the coach and the team are like. Either you adapt and work for it or things don’t work out for you. Joao worked very well at times, but you have to be consistent.

Antoine Griezmann, Atletico Madrid
© ProShots - Antoine Griezmann, Atletico Madrid

“There were times when he got tired and didn’t see himself here. That’s why he’s made the effort [to leave] and the club has also made the effort to give him a way out.”

Furthermore, Oblak did not hold back either, admitting to Marca: “He knows me and I know him, he knows the team perfectly. Joao is a high-quality player who can do wonderful things that are completely unexpected.

“I think every game is a completely different story and it doesn’t matter if we know each other perfectly or not.”

“I’m sure that [the minutes Felix is getting] are extremely important, not only for Joao but also for any player. But you have to prove it on the pitch and during training that you deserve to be in the lineup.

“You have to give your best so that the coach can trust you, and this doesn’t just apply to Joao.”

Saul has also previously commented that Felix did not put in 100% effort during his time at Diego Simeone’s side.

However, the Barcelona star isn’t happy with the criticism aimed at him. “I disagree [with the criticism],” he told Movistar+, via Football Espana. “Everyone has their opinion… and I’m not going to comment.

Joao Felix at Barcelona
© ProShots - Joao Felix at Barcelona

“Obviously things could have been done better. Both me and everyone else. There have been things that have not been done well, but it was not just the fault of one person… it was the fault of several.”

Barcelona face Atletico Madrid on Sunday, with Felix eligible to play in the fixture.

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