Bayern Munich winger Franck Ribery believes fellow Frenchman Antoine Griezmann is not after “one good season” a world-class player — a bracket that he feels he belongs in.
Speaking to Sport Bild, Ribery, 33 accepted that the Atletico Madrid attacker had performed well last term, but said that was not enough for his compatriot to join the ranks of the elite.
“Yes, last season he played well, but you should only be considered world-class when you consistently deliver these performances,” the former France international said. “We are too quick to say after one good season, ‘This player is outstanding, he must win the Ballon d’Or.’ I don’t agree with this. Quality means, for me, churning out top performances over a period of 10, 12 or 15 years. Then, I say well played too.”
Griezmann offered a measured response to Ribery later on Thursday, telling Eurosport, “I know I am on the right track.”
Despite a long-term injury, Ribery believes that he has belonged to the top echelon of players over the years — unlike Griezmann, who scored the away goal for Atletico that knocked Bayern out of the Champions League in April.
“OK, I was injured for nine months last year, but other than that I was almost always at the top of my game over the past decade,” he said.