It remains to be seen whether Antoine Griezmann will regret his decision to reject Manchester United to stay at Atletico Madrid earlier in the summer.
The Frenchman seemed almost certain to sign for the Red Devils at one stage before making a surprise U-turn, insisting he couldn’t leave Los Rojiblancos following their transfer ban.
But after Man United’s fast start to the season, it looks like Griezmann could be missing out on something special.
Jose Mourinho’s side have won their opening two leagues 4-0 and look rampant right now.
Atleti, meanwhile, could only manage a 2-2 draw in their La Liga opener against Girona this afternoon.
And it was a match that Diego Simeone’s side could have easily lost. They trailed by two goals to nil after Christian Stuani scored two goals in four first-half minutes for Girona.
But late goals from Angel Correa and Jose Gimenez salvaged a point for the visitors.
Griezmann's red card
When Griezmann was sent off midway through the second half, it looked like Atletico’s season was about to get off to the worst possible start.
The Frenchman was sent off in pretty bizarre circumstances, receiving two yellow cards in a matter of seconds in the 67th minute.
The first came when he was accused of diving in an attempt to win a penalty. Griezmann fell over Girona goalkeeper Gorka Iraizoz but the referee deemed it an act of simulation.
Griezmann sat on the floor laughing at the decision. He then got to his feet, uttered some words to the official and was swiftly sent off.
Watch the incident below.
So Griezmann’s second booking came for dissent and Spanish sports correspondent Kieran Canning has wondered on Twitter whether he’s set receive a four-match ban.
It was an enthralling match but Simeone will certainly rue the result.
Real Madrid and Barcelona both get their campaigns up and running on Sunday and there’s every chance his side will be two points behind Spain’s two dominant teams come Monday morning.
Whether Diego Costa is the difference between third place and being able to compete with Real and Barca remains doubtful, although Atleti’s transfer ban means the Chelsea outcast wouldn’t be able to join until January.
Simeone's thoughts on transfer ban
Simeone revealed this week that Atletico Madrid are using the transfer ban, imposed in June, as a source of motivation.
"The club has made a huge effort to keep its most important players and it's clear that the players who have stayed have a huge sense of belonging here and that reflects well on the club," Simeone said on Friday, per Reuters.
"Now we have to reflect that on the pitch. Some would see not being able to sign players as a weakness but we've taken it as a positive because we all know each other, we know how we want to play, and that boosts the essence and ideas of the team."
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