Player Of The Month – January

Griezmann sweeps best player award for the first time this season

Griezmann has been a key figure in the last two seasons

Griezmann has been a key figure in the last two seasons

With nine games in total, January was by far the busiest month of Atlético Madrid’s season so far, and in terms of results it was also arguably the most turbulent.

The red and whites crashed out of the Copa del Rey with a shock home defeat to Celta Vigo and lost ground in La Liga, but did manage some important wins during the new year marathon of fixtures.

As usual, Antoine Griezmann was at the heart of most of our memorable moments, scoring six times in total and making the difference in a number of matches to keep us on Barcelona’s tail at the top of the table.

The Frenchman has had to take on more responsibility this season with our other striker’s misfiring, and has even lead the line on his own on a few occasions.

Now that Jackson has been sold, the onus is on him more than ever to be our main goalscoring threat but so far he has proved that he is up to the task.

Back on January 10th, he broke the deadlock at a rain-soaked Balaídos, helping us to a crucial 2-0 win at high flyers Celta in what looked like a potential banana skin on paper.

Four days later, he came off the bench to secure our passage to the Copa del Rey quarter-finals with a brace at home to Rayo, before showing his predatory instincts again the following weekend with a further two goals away at Las Palmas.

The month ended on a sour note for Atleti, and although Griezmann did find the net again against Celta again in our 3-2 cup defeat, he would have been disappointed not to have done the same in our loss at the Camp Nou.

With Barҫa a goal and a man up, he was presented with a golden chance to equalise after a great ball from Carrasco, but was denied by the outstretched leg of former Real Sociedad teammate Claudio Bravo.

Had things gone differently, he could have also been the hero against Sevilla the previous week, but saw a header rebound off just the wrong side of the post in an eventual 0-0 draw.

Despite the setbacks, the 24 year-old can’t be faulted for his effort and continues going from strength to strength, making the difference more often than not in the rojiblanco attack.

When joining the club he was a talented winger still learning the ropes, but Simeone has turned him into an all-action frontman who covers every blade of grass and can kill teams when given even just the sniff of a chance.

Griezmann’s name is often mentioned now amongst the world’s best attacking players, which is a testament to his remarkable growth and hard work off the pitch.

News also came out during January that he had agreed a new contract with an improved €100m buy-out clause, which fans will be praying is confirmed before the end of the season.

His closest challenger for the award was perhaps a player not even currently at Atleti, Borja Bastón, who hit 7 goals in 5 games at loan side Eibar and moved top of the Zarra standings, the award for the top scoring Spanish striker in La Liga.

Godín, the rejuvenated Filipe and December’s winner Saúl all deserve honourable mentions, but few will argue with Griezmann – especially as it’s the first time he’s won it this season.

Do you agree with our choice? Just how important is Griezmann to the team?


  • Koke

    1) He’s a fantastic player and I hope he stays with us for a long time. For the first time ever I am not worried about one of our world class players leaving us for somewhere else. Where on earth would he go? How many clubs in the world are really a step up from Atleti? Arguably only Barcelona, Real Madrid, and Bayern. Grizi would never leave us for Barca or Madrid, so really I could only see him ever possibly going to Bayern or maybe PSG. Chelsea, Man U, etc are all overrated mediocre clubs and won’t go somewhere with no CL football.

  • Koke

    2) Anybody interested in seeing Griezmann play more often as the central striker? I know he’s more used to playing as a winger or supporting striker, but honestly I think he has all the attributes to make a deadly center forward. No, he’s not the tallest or the strongest, but the likes of David Villa, Sergio Aguero, Paco Alcacer and even our own Vietto aren’t the tallest or strongest either. Griezmann makes great runs, is super clinical in the box, is great with teamplay, and is even fantastic at headers. If we converted him to an all out center forward then we could incorporate someone like Correa or even sign someone like Mahrez for the RW position. It’s just a thought – and I guess a drawback is that we’d miss out on his playmaking talents. It’s just that he’s too good offensively to be playing defense as much as he does…

  • Saul

    rsdf

  • Saul

    Griezmann as CS – big yes for the rest of this season.
    For 16/17 I hope Atleti get back Borja or buy Lucas from Depor. They are ideal for that position and proven in La Liga (unlike Jackson), and use Nando as a supersub.

  • AsianJudy

    I like his flexibility in how he scores. So far he’s been looking much like an attacking midfielder who floats forward but I don’t mind the amount he contributes and honestly he is a real joy to watch. Pretty soon with the injury list we have building we may need him to play a real midfield role… (Insert bitter laughter)

  • Farzad From IRaN

    I heard simeone will leave our club….Is it true????

  • Farzad From IRaN

    please answer…I shocked when I heard this