Barcelona Featured Interviews LaLiga

Koeman: “I don’t think this is my last game, I have a contract”

Antoine Griezmann celebrates with the team after scoring against Eibar (Photo by Juan Manuel Serrano Arce/Getty Images)

FC Barcelona defeated Eibar 1-0 at the Municipal de Ipurua stadium in their final LaLiga match of the season, with the help of a goal from Antoine Griezmann. Ronald Koeman and the French forward both spoke after the match.

Here’s what Ronald Koeman had to say:

On how it feels to win the last match

“It is important to win the last game. We leave with a better feeling than if we had not won. We went out with Frenkie as center-back because we knew that Eibar is a team that puts a lot of pressure on the top. But it cost us a lot to create chances. There have been plays in which instead of going up we have taken a step back. We made the changes to change the game and we did. And in the end we won it.”

On the importance of closing the LaLiga season with a victory

“We are Barça and we are always expected to win our games. Today we have fulfilled, with a game that has not been brilliant and without many scoring chances. We have created very little danger, but we know our weapons. I want to highlight the energy put in by the players in difficult moments. We must highlight the professionalism of this team, who have done everything possible to win today’s game.”

On if it was his last game

“I don’t think its my last game. I have a contract. You talk a lot about this issue, but I am calm. If there is something that the club wants to change, they have to talk to me. It’s human that when you’ve been answering the same questions for a while, you get tired.”

On Real Madrid finishing the season trophyless

“You have to always look at yourself. I want to congratulate Atletico on their season. They have been the team that has been the leader for the longest time and have a very well made squad. Congratulations.”

On his plans for the next season

“When we arrived, we took the roster that was available. The only signing was that of Dest, on the last day. For me it is not a squad with the level we want for Barça. This is so and many people in the club think the same. There are older players, with due respect, who have still shown that they have a level for this team and there are very young players who will show that they are good. The squad is not done, you have to have a more effective squad up top. We are the team that has scored the most goals, but the percentage has been lower than that of a team like Barça.”

On how he would rate the season

“I already said it yesterday. The problem existed because we recovered many points, we won the Cup brilliantly and people were plugged in. There are some games in which we could have become the leaders and we did not win. We have to learn, but if in August they tell me that we win a title and fight for another, I would happily take it. During the season we could have done more, and the hopes have been too high. The season is not bad, far from it. It is not the best we could do, but you cannot ask for a double every year from a team that is forming.”

Here’s what Antoine Griezmann had to say after the match:

On the victory against Eibar

“The most important thing was to win and come out with a victory. I am happy with the goal, but still disappointed because we couldn’t win the league. The teams have gotten to know us more. Sometimes you have to change the system, like in the second half today, to destabilize the rival. And then, sometimes we have missed chances up top. We have to improve.”

On the 2020/21 season

“We are still hurt because we couldn’t win LaLiga. We have failed in important games. Our image was not very good at the beginning, but in 2021 we had a near perfect run. Now it’s time to rest and see what we can improve next year to win everything.”

On what lies ahead now that the season is over

“I will try to have a good Euros and the president will have to make the movements. I will work as I have done these two years and I will try to continue enjoying it.”

On Atletico winning LaLiga

“I’m happy for Atlético, for Cholo, for Koke, for my friends at Atleti and their fans, who deserve it. We have to work so that next year we can win it.”