Griezmann still stuck being Atlético’s super-sub as Real Madrid visit looms | La Liga

OkArim Benzema won’t play within the Madrid derby. Jan Oblak will. And as for Antoine Griezmann, he’ll do each. You by no means know precisely what is going to occur when Atlético Madrid hosts Real Madrid, not any extra a minimum of, however on Sunday night time on the Metropolitano there’s one factor you might be fairly certain of: on the hour, the person sporting the purple and white shirt with the No. 8 on the again will probably be standing together with the pitch, glancing up on the clock, ready to run on, his time having rolled round once more, which it all the time does.

Every three or 4 days it’s the similar and though they didn’t anticipate to still be right here deep into September and would love it to alter quickly, it is not going to only but.

On Saturday, Carlo Ancelotti confirmed that Benzema, unable to coach along with his teammates, won’t make it whereas Diego Simeone confirmed that Oblak had recovered from harm and can. Without really saying so, which is how he all the time says it, how he has to say it, Simeone additionally confirmed that Griezmann would get half an hour, plus added time. “For the second, we’re carrying on like this,” the Atlético coach stated.

Carry on could be the suitable phrases, too. Griezmann isn’t the one one ready for the inevitable, nearly a meme now; everybody else is, too. Atlético have performed seven video games. Their joint high scorer this season, who has scored eight instances and supplied 5 assists in his profession in opposition to Madrid, has not began any. He has come on as a substitute in all of them. The minute by which he was launched inform the story: 62, 62, 64, 63, 61, 63, 62.

Griezmann is on a two-year mortgage from Barcelona with an compulsory €40m buy clause on the finish, if he performs greater than 45 minutes in half the video games he’s accessible. Atlético can’t afford to pay €40m – and Barcelona can’t actually afford for them to not, still much less to be stuck with him – and so, after he was a digital ever-present final season, they’re now “not taking part in” him by taking part in him for fewer minutes than are wanted to depend. (Coming on with half an hour left is taking part in protected, with added time.)

It isn’t state of affairs, damaging for everybody and risking eclipsing every thing, though it’s designed to use stress on Barcelona to renegotiate and is healthier than the choice: not having Griezmann in any respect. The membership would have most well-liked to launch him; the coach, although, insisted on him staying, reluctantly convincing him to simply accept a lowered position, a minimum of briefly.

Griezmann has completed so with exceptional restraint, shrugging “it’s what it’s”, whereas Simeone admitted: “I’m a membership man.” At the identical time as the president, Enrique Cerezo, claimed the coach may choose who he desires. It helps that it labored fairly nicely: Griezmann has three objectives. “The actuality is that he’s taking part in very nicely in half-hour. In 60, we do not know,” the supervisor stated after he scored the winner in opposition to Porto.

The actuality is that this isn’t what he desires and after the defeat at Bayer Leverkusen on Tuesday, for the primary time Simeone pointedly stated that he would like him to have extra minutes. The cracks are exhibiting. “The staff performs higher with Griezmann on the pitch,” Simeone stated on Wednesday. On Saturday, he described Griezmann’s introduction as giving Atlético an “further step, extra ‘hierarchy’, better mixture”.

Yet requested if the derby could also be an evening the place it’s value racking up a match, or if maybe this was the type of event when Griezmann’s absence annoys him much more, Simeone responded by saying:[Álvaro] Morata and João [Félix] are taking part in nicely. Griezmann is taking part in nicely in half-hour.”

Fede Valverde, pictured throughout Real Madrid’s Champions League defeat of RB Leipzig, has been in tremendous type. Photograph: Bagu Blanco/Pressinphoto/Shutterstock

If meaning Atlético ought to enhance within the second half – at instances, it may really feel nearly as if the sport itself is ready for Griezmann, as if it does not likely depend till his inevitable introduction – Ancelotti is aware of it’s coming and might put together. Besides, the identical is true of Real.

Although they’re with out Benzema, Madrid scored 4 in his absence final weekend. Rodrygo, more likely to be chosen forward of Eden Hazard, was excellent. Fede Valverde is flying. Casemiro has not been missed but. Luka Modric turned 37 final week, not that you’d realize it. Vinícius Júnior, particularly, is taking part in beautifully.

Ancelotti’s facet have received eight out of eight – and it’s the second half that has been the important thing. The combination rating of the primary half of video games is Madrid 6 Opponents 5; the combination rating of the second half is 16-0. “We have a method, which is known as the tiredness technique,” Ancelotti joked. “We make them suppose that we’re drained after which within the second half… It will probably be aggressive prefer it all the time is in opposition to Atlético. I do not anticipate something new: recreation, with an open consequence.”

If that a part of the plot is assured – come the hour, come the Griezmann – the remaining needs to be performed out. “With derbies, you all the time suppose it is necessary the way you come into it and I might have most well-liked to take action with a win in midweek,” Simeone stated. “But when the sport begins it is a completely new story. A brand new movie begins and we do not know the way it ends, which is why it is so enjoyable.”

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