Tiago - Griezmann will reach level of Messi and Ronaldo


Tiago has called on his Atletico Madrid team-mates to help drag Antoine Griezmann up to the level of Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo.

Griezmann has scored 50 goals in 81 LaLiga appearances for Atletico since moving to the Vicente Calderon from Real Sociedad in 2014 and is widely regarded as their key player as they continue to challenge for major honours alongside Real Madrid and Barcelona.

The France international was the top scorer at Euro 2016 - and also named best player - as the tournament hosts reached the final before going down to Portugal.

And Tiago believes Griezmann is close to joining Messi and Ronaldo in the top bracket of world stars, and will achieve that status with a little help from his club mates.

He told Marca: "He will get there I'm sure, but it's difficult to say what he lacks or what he has to prove.

"Griezmann needs our help to get there because he has to win titles and score goals every year to be able to compete with them as they are two monsters who dazzle us with the number of goals they get.

"What the Frenchman is doing is already incredible, he is leading us to become a team with the ability to compete with them and now he needs our help to reach their level."

Atletico have lost two of the last three Champions League finals, both to cross-town rivals Real, but Tiago dismisses suggestions winning the continental crown is becoming an obsession.

"Not for me even though I am coming to the end of my career and my dream has always been to win it," he added.

"It's so hard to win the Champions League, it can't be our obsession. We have to enjoy the journey and these games.

"The good thing is that you get to play against the best teams in the world and we love to compete against the best which is why we love to play the Champions League and to be able to win it. Although it's not been possible, we'll try again."

The Portugal international missed Euro 2016 after breaking a leg against Espanyol in November 2015, but has made a tentative comeback with four appearances this season, the latest coming in a late cameo against Valencia on October 2.

"The truth is that I felt good and I enjoyed returning to be with the team and to help them," he said.

"Without a doubt, after what happened to me last year, it is a pleasure to play and help my team. Of course, I hope to have more games and I am going to appreciate every minute to the utmost.

"The fractured tibia is totally forgotten. I'm not afraid but sometimes the leg hurts more if it's been a hard game."