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Griezmann apologises to fans after teasing Man United over move to Old Trafford

Date Posted,June 12, 2017

Antoine Griezmann apologised for any misunderstanding his comments about his future may have caused in recent months after extending his Atletico Madrid contract until 2022.

Griezmann signed a one-year contract extension with Atletico on Tuesday to bring a definitive end to one of the year’s longest-running transfer sagas.

The France international had looked on course to join Manchester United for a fee reportedly in the region of 100 million euros (£87million) – the release clause in his Atletico contract – with Griezmann at one point saying there was a “six out of 10” chance of him moving to Old Trafford this summer.

However, in what appeared to be a series of mixed messages from Griezmann while transfer speculation rumbled on, the former Real Sociedad forward also seemed to suggest he saw his future at Atletico as well.

In the end, the likelihood of any summer move to United began to disappear at the start of this month when the Europa League winners revealed their interest in the 26-year-old had cooled.

Jose Mourinho is in the market to sign a big name striker (Photo: Getty)

That came on the same day that Atletico lost their appeal against a FIFA-imposed transfer ban, meaning they would not be able to register any new players until next January.

In the wake of that ruling, Griezmann revealed he would be staying with Atletico, saying that leaving now would be a “dirty move”, and on Tuesday he rubber-stamped that commitment by penning a new deal that ties him to the Spanish outfit until June 30, 2022.

Speaking after signing his new contract, Griezmann said on his club’s website: “The first thing that I want to do is apologise to the people who misunderstood my statements.

“Maybe I expressed myself badly or someone wanted to make news where there wasn’t any, but since I came (to Atletico) I have given my all for my club, my team-mates and my coaching staff, and I’m very happy to live one more season with all of you.

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“I will thank them all (the fans) by giving my best on the pitch, as always.”

Griezmann has been a huge success since joining Atletico from Sociedad in 2014 and has finished as the Rojiblancos’ leading scorer in each of his three seasons at the Vicente Calderon.

The forward, who has netted 83 goals in 160 matches for the club, now intends to take a break before returning to training with his team-mates ahead of next season, which will be the first for Atletico at their new Wanda Metropolitano stadium.

He said: “Now, I will be resting for a few days to recover and return with my team-mates and the coaching staff to prepare for the season in Los Angeles de San Rafael, like every year.”

Antoine Griezmann prepares for the England game at the Stade de France (Photo: AFP)

It remains to be seen if United will be back in for Griezmann next year, but Atletico are delighted their talisman has committed himself to the club for the coming campaign.

Sporting director Jose Luis Perez Caminero said: “It’s great news because he is one of the best players in the world and all of us Atleticos should congratulate ourselves for him staying with us.

“Antoine is a different player, capable of changing a match, with spectacular qualities, a very complete player.”

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