Ernesto Valverde: Barcelona "respect" Atletico Madrid, Antoine Griezmann

Valverde: Barcelona
© Offside
Barcelona manager Ernesto Valverde dodges questions regarding the future of Antoine Griezmann, insisting that it is important his side 'respect' Atletico Madrid.

Ernesto Valverde has insisted that Barcelona "have every respect" for Atletico Madrid after the La Liga leaders were forced to deny making a fresh approach for the striker.

Barca distanced themselves from rumoured speculation which emerged in the Spanish press suggesting that an agreement has been struck to sign the France international.

Having been reported to FIFA last year for an alleged illegal approach in their pursuit of the 26-year-old, Valverde was keen to avoid any fresh controversy when questions regarding Griezmann's future popped up in his weekly presser.

"Griezmann plays for another club and we have every respect for the club he's at, which is at Atletico Madrid, where I'm sure he has a lot of things to say," he told reporters.

"We are in the middle of the market at the moment and you always live with lot of speculation. The club made a very clear statement. If you ask me if Griezmann is a good player, of course he is. But I've always said the players I like best are all my players."

Barcelona are eight points clear at the top of La Liga with a game in hand, away to Real Betis on Sunday evening, to play.

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Antoine Griezmann celebrates scoring for Atletico Madrid on September 17, 2017
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Tables
TeamPWDLFAGDPTS
1Barcelona24195062115162
2Atletico MadridAtletico2416713692755
3Real Madrid24146458273148
4Valencia24144647281946
5Sevilla2412393135-439
6Villarreal2411583529638
7EibarEibar2410593236-435
8GironaGirona249783430434
9Getafe248972921833
10Real Betis24103114150-933
11Celta Vigo2495104137432
12Real Sociedad2485114645129
13Leganes2485112128-729
14Athletic Bilbao2461082427-328
15AlavesAlaves2491142233-1128
16Espanyol246992232-1027
17Levante24311102138-1720
18Las PalmasLas Palmas2453161852-3418
19Deportivo La CorunaDeportivo2445152453-2917
20Malaga2434171538-2313
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