World Cup winning French striker Antoine Griezmann has told Atletico Madrid he will leave them in summer, the Spanish club said on Twitter on Tuesday.
The 28-year-old Griezmann has a contract until 2023 with Atletico, but has a buy out clause of 120 million euros ($134 million).
He is reportedly the target of La Liga rivals Barcelona.
“Antoine Griezmann has told the club he will not continue as a Rojiblanco (red and white, the club’s colours) next season,” the club said on Twitter.
Within a few moments the player himself then posted a video explaining himself.
He said: “It’s been an incredible five years. Thank you for everything,” he said.
“I wanted to tell the fans who have always given me a lot of love that I have taken the decision to leave, to see other things, to have other challenges.
“The truth is it has been difficult to take this route but it is what I feel I need and I would like to thank all of you for the love you have shown me during these five years.”
While in Atletico, he scored 133 goals in 256 appearances, since joining from fellow Spanish outfit Real Sociedad in 2014.
He won the Europa League, the Spanish Super Cup and the UEFA Super Cup during his time at Atletico and has been the team’s top scorer in each of the last five seasons.
NFF Denies Amokachi’s Appointment
The Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) has denied rumour making the rounds about the appointment of former Super Eagles Captain and Coach, Daniel Amokachi as Head of its Technical Department.
In a statement on Wednesday, Ademola Olajire, NFF Director of Communications, said Bitrus Bewarang still remained the federation’s Technical Director.
Olajire quoted Chairman of the NFF Technical and Development Committee, Alhaji Yusuf Fresh, as saying that at no time did the body call for applications from candidates for that position, not to talk of appointing anyone.
“This clarification becomes necessary against the background of wide-circulating, but totally misleading reports of the appointment of Amokachi, a former Super Eagles captain and coach, as head of NFF technical department.”
“’The NFF has been bemused by this unfounded story, which no doubt must have embarrassed Amokachi himself,” Fresh said.
JUST IN: Jubilation As Anthony Joshua Arrives In Sagamu
There was jubilation in Sagamu on Wednesday when Heavyweight Champion Anthony Joshua arrived at the palace of Akarigbo of Remo.
It was gathered that Joshua met Akarigbo and other chiefs in Sagamu around 1.15pm.
Head, Anthony Joshua Supporters Club, Sagamu, popularly known as Mr Naira, confirmed Joshua’s presence to The PUNCH.
He commended the boxer for yielding to their calls to visit Sagamu.
Footballer Suspended For 5 Years For Biting Opponent’s Penis During A Match In France
An amateur player was handed five years ban in a local league for biting one of his opponents’ penis during a post-match fight in France.
The incident reportedly occurred after a second division game between Terville and Soetrich in a local league that ended 1 – 1 on 17 November 2019.
According to a local news website in Lorraine, a player from each side started fighting, another Terville player joined in, apparently trying to separate them. The Soetrich player responded by biting the peacemaker’s penis. The victim required about 10 stitches and had to take four days off work.
‘The events took place after the match, in the stadium car park. There was an altercation, an escalation and things got worse,’ said Emmanuel Saling of the Mosellan football district, adding that the blame was ‘more or less shared’.
Saling also said that because the ‘case was quite original’, the disciplinary committee had called an expert witness before deciding to suspend the Soetrich player for five years.
The injured Terville player was also suspended for six months for his part in the fight.
‘It’s quite rare to have sanctions of several years, there are less than 10 per year,’ Saling said. ‘The case was a bit saucy, but … there must have been some nasty tension, so the smiles on the disciplinary committee quickly faded.’
The publication also revealed that the two clubs were punished with two penalty points and a fine of 200 euros ‘for failing to meet their safety obligations’ and ‘for the lack of reaction from club officials when the fight broke out.’