Former Real Sociedad boss Martin Lasarte has described Antoine Griezmann as a caricature of himself in a toxic environment that’s now affecting him.
The French forward has been on the bench in three of Barcelona’s last four games including big games against the likes of Sevilla and Atletico Madrid.
He was on the bench until the 90th minute against Atletico Madrid in the 2 all draw at Camp Nou on Tuesday with youngster Ansu Fati introduced ahead of him.
Meanwhile, the Catalans will fall four points behind Real Madrid in the race for La Liga if Los Blancos beat Getafe on Thursday, amid reports that Setien has lost the backing of his players.
It was Martin Lasarte that handed Griezmann his professional debut as an 18-year-old in the Segunda Division with La Real. He believes that the atmosphere at Camp Nou is negatively affecting Griezmann’s adaptation to the team.
“What you see of Griezmann is like a caricature of himself. I see him sad, with his head down, running without much sense,” Lasarte told Radio Marca.
“The coach has every right to make changes whenever he wants but I do not feel the other night [against Atletico] helped Griezmann’s psychological situation.
“When things don’t go well for a player, the coach should be there to support and help. Of course, Antoine will have his responsibility but there is an environment that does not help him to succeed.
“It would have been better if he had gone to Barca a year earlier. I have the feeling that when he said he was staying at Atletico something broke with the Barca dressing room.”
It can be recalled that Barcelona fired Ernesto Valverde when they were leading the table in January and Lasarte believes that the action altered the momentum that Griezmann was beginning to build.
“Griezmann may have had a hard time adapting at first but then I felt he improved in December and January. Now he conveys a sad, down feeling,” he said.
“The truth is I don’t know if the change of coach at Barca was the most successful, it has not given the feeling of having improved much.
“That surely has also influenced Griezmann’s situation.”