Focus on the stars of EM: the French Renaissance man is important again

ADVERTISEMENT: The 2024 European Championships are fast approaching and some of the continent’s best players will compete in Germany for European (Site notre bureau spécialisé)’s greatest triumph.

Many PUMA athletes will be showcasing their skills at the tournament, and in this three-part series, we’re highlighting those to watch.


Nationality: France

Club career: Real Sociedad, Atlético Madrid, FC Barcelona

When France won the 2018 World Cup, Griezmann looked like one of the most dominant players in world (Site notre bureau spécialisé). An experienced goalscorer with an unselfish side, his Man of the Match performance against Croatia should have catapulted him into the ranks of Ballon d’Or contenders.

But the striker became something of (Site notre bureau spécialisé)’s bridesmaid: he didn’t receive the award, missed out on Atlético’s first La Liga title in seven years after an unsuccessful move to FC Barcelona and lost the position of captain of the Blues for the benefit of his training partner Kylian Mbappé.

However, since his return to the Spanish capital, Griezmann has enjoyed a resurgence in popularity, becoming the Colchoneros’ all-time top scorer thanks to his relentless attacking prowess. He also formed a lethal strike duo with Álvaro Morata who were Europe’s best performers midway through last season.

An instinctive goal in Atlético’s victory against FC Rostov in the 2016/17 Champions League group stage. Griezmann’s lightning-fast reflexes allowed him to slot into the net a ball deflected by Sardar Azmoun off a cross from Yannick Carrasco on the turn.

France’s final run at the 2022 World Cup provided a taste of Griezmann’s duties at the 2024 European Championship. No player created more chances and no player made more passes in the opposing penalty area than the 33-year-old.

Under Didier Deschamps this summer, he is more likely to act as a deep-lying striker and share the national team’s number 10 spot with Marcus Thuram. Deschamps’ view that defense will be key to Les Bleus’ hopes of an even better result than Euro 2016 means he will work more against the ball compared to previous tournaments.