Griezmann reacts after guiding Barcelona to victory over Real Betis

France international Antoine Griezmann has spoken to the Spanish media in the aftermath of Barcelona’s 5-2 win over Real Betis in the Spanish La Liga. The reigning champions made the worst possible start to the season as they suffered a 1-0 away defeat at Athletic Bilbao and Griezmann had a forgettable debut with not a single attempt on target.

Against Betis, the Blaugrana suffered a minor scare with Nabil Fekir opening the scoring but Griezmann managed to level the proceedings with his maiden club goal. In the second period, the Catalan giants were thoroughly dominant as they added four more goals compared to Betis’ one and Griezmann was the standout performer with another goal and an assist.

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Neymar hails Lionel Messi as the best player in the world

Brazil international Neymar has hailed Lionel Messi as the best player in the world amid the recent speculation linking him with a return to Barcelona. The 27-year-old is currently with Paris Saint-Germain whom he joined from Barcelona two years ago but reports have indicated that he would favour a reunion with Messi at the Camp Nou this summer.

Speaking to reporters, Neymar said that Messi remains the best player in the world on his point of view and the duo share a fond relationship off the playing field, he told: “For me, he’s the best player in the world. The best player that I’ve ever seen play. We made a magnificent duo. It was a pleasure for me, an honour to play with him. And, on top of that, he is my friend.”

Neymar has been fancied to make the switch to the Blaugrana this summer but so far, the club have refused suggestions that they are looking to land his signature. Nonetheless, talks are understood to be going on behind the scenes and reports suggest that the Spanish champions would prefer an exchange of players for the attacker rather than matching the world-record £200m fee which Les Parisiens paid to sign him two years ago.

Elsewhere, the Blaugrana have further strengthened their ranks with the purchase of Antoine Griezmann from Atletico Madrid. The Frenchman had been touted to join the club for the past few seasons and he has eventually landed at the Camp Nou this summer after the Catalans decided to trigger the £108m release clause on his Atletico contract.

Ernesto Valverde’s side have dominated the proceedings in the Spanish league with back-to-back titles and the club could give more priority to the Champions League this term where they have come short over the past four seasons. The club have not reached the final since winning the competition against Juventus during the 2014/15 season.

Jurgen Klopp speaks on Coutinho and Suarez ahead of Barcelona encounter

Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp has said that it would be very special for Philippe Coutinho and Luis Suarez when they face their former club in the last four of the Champions League. The duo are currently in the ranks of Barcelona and Klopp expects a tough contest with no real weaknesses in either side.

Speaking to Viasport Football, Klopp said that it would be a very special moment for Coutinho and Suarez to return to Anfield, where they made a reputation for themselves. He added that his team have shown the fight to reach the current phase of the competition and he is proud of the same achievement.
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Luis Suarez: Villarreal draw showed Barcelona’s spirit to win the title

Barcelona striker Luis Suarez has said that the club’s hard-fought 4-4 draw against Villarreal showed the spirit in the team to win the league title. The Blaugrana took an early 2-0 lead against the Yellow Submarines on the road but the hosts sparkled a tremendous comeback to score four goals without reply.

At 4-2, the Blaugrana appeared destined to suffer their third league defeat of the season, but Lionel Messi and Suarez scripted a dramatic ending as they found the scoresheet in the final five minutes of the game. Speaking after the encounter, Suarez was overwhelmed with the eventual overcome and stated that the stalemate showed the club’s urge to retain the La Liga crown, he said: “The spirit which we showed to never give up demonstrates how much we want to lift this league title. Looking at how the first half was going I think we put in a great performance, we deserved to be winning although we know they had chances to score too.”
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Paul Parker believes Manchester United must be aware of Luis Suarez threat against Barcelona

Former Manchester United ace Paul Parker believes Manchester United may need to be wary of the threat presented from Luis Suarez when Barcelona face them in the quarter-final stage of the Champions League. The Red Devils have been afforded with a difficult tie in the last eight stage and the match could be defined with their positioning against the likes of Suarez and Lionel Messi.

In a report covered by Euro Sport, Parker indicated that Suarez presents more of a threat to the Red Devils backline than Lionel Messi, given his tendency to make regularly movements across the frontline. He added that the Uruguayan’s flair in attacking-minded positions should test the central defence which is likely to compose of Chris Smalling and Victor Lindelof.
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