Griezmann: I can't wait for Messi to arrive


New FC Barcelona signing Antoine Griezmann has revealed his eagerness to link up with five-time Ballon d'Or winner Lionel Messi at the Blaugrana.

Griezmann, 28, became Barca's second-most expensive signing of all time, after Brazil star Philippe Coutinho, when he put pen to paper on a five-year deal believed to be worth €120 million (R1.9 billion) in transfer fees.

Read: Barca used R546m loan for Griezmann

The former Atletico Madrid star recently heaped praise on Messi and drew parallels between the Barca skipper and NBA legend LeBron James, insisting that the Argentine superstar is the "image of football".

With Messi enjoying an extended holiday following his Copa America exploits with Argentina, Griezmann has now admitted he cannot wait to play alongside the Blaugrana skipper.

"Yes, it will be amazing (to play alongside Messi)," he said, as per Marca.

"I'm excited to see what he's like day to day, what he's like in training. (I want to) catch him doing things in training that I will try to repeat or do in my own way, and get to know him on and off the pitch.

"I can't wait for him to arrive. I will be ready to do whatever it takes: for him, for the club and for the players."

The 2018 Fifa World Cup winner also revealed that he received a warm welcome from his new teammates upon taking part in his first training session as a Barca player.

"The truth is it started badly because they nutmegged me twice in my first rondo. Luckily I have learned the lesson," Griezmann said in a press-conference, as per the Daily Mirror.

"Messi has not called me yet, but Suarez did. He congratulated me and welcomed me.

"The group has welcomed me and I am happy to share a dressing room with them. Hopefully I can help in the best way possible."

Barca will officially commence their pre-season tour of Asia on Tuesday, 23 July, with a friendly against Frank Lampard's Chelsea, before clashing with Andres Iniesta's Vissel Kobe on Saturday, 27 July.