LAGOS, Nigeria (VOICE OF NAIJA)-Antoine Griezmann has acknowledged that Didier Deschamps’ choice to name Kylian Mbappe France’s captain instead of him was “hard to stomach.“
Hugo Lloris’ retirement at the beginning of the year made Griezmann the early favorite to take over as France’s captain, but Deschamps ultimately gave Mbappe, a standout player for Paris Saint-Germain, the armband.
Griezmann was apparently caught off guard by the choice, which briefly tore the team apart. After the rejection, it was even claimed that the Atletico Madrid star might consider retiring.
He has acknowledged that it was “tough” for him to accept Deschamps’ justification, but he eventually did and has moved over the issue.
“It was hard to take, and tough. I’m 32 and, although I still have the legs, I know I’m reaching the end [of my career],” he told Telefoot. “I had a hard time stomaching it for one or two days.”
Griezmann was not present for France’s 3-0 victory against Gibraltar in their Euro 2024 qualifying match, in which Mbappe recorded a goal while once again serving as captain.
However, the 32-year-old said he had nothing against his teammate, saying, “I’m entirely behind our captain Kylian. Nothing will change since that is who I am, so I won’t.
The Atletico attacker is expected to start for France against Greece on Monday in their upcoming European Championship qualifying match.
With a perfect record through three games, Deschamps’ team leads Group B at the moment.