Antoine Griezmann says he has a lot of respect for Barcelona team-mate Lionel Messi and has denied talk of a rift that was suggested by both the French forward's uncle Emmanuel Lopes and former agent Eric Olhats.

Olhats said earlier this month that Messi held a "reign of terror" at Barca, while Griezmann's uncle had said it was "not easy" for his nephew to play alongside the six-time Ballon d'Or winner.

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The comments prompted Messi to respond by saying he was "tired of being the root of every problem at this club", but Griezmann has sought to clear the air by distancing himself from the comments.

"It's time to put things in their place because I have been putting up with comments for a long while and now it's time to say enough," Griezmann said in an interview with Movistar.

"I've not had a relationship with Eric since I got married. He was invited to the wedding, but he didn't come. I got angry and I have not seen him since.

My agent is my sister, but she doesn't speak. Neither do my parents. As no one speaks, Eric offers an opinion but that can do a lot of damage and create doubts about my relationship with Leo. Leo knows I have a lot of respect for him. I learn from him.

Antoine Griezmann and Lionel Messi

Image credit: Getty Images

"And then my uncle, he doesn't know how football works. A journalist comes and wants a phrase out of you. You chat for an hour and you're careful about what you say, then they seem like your friend but, in the end, they just want to get a headline out of you.

"I told Leo I have nothing to do with them. I don't speak to them. I haven't spoken with Eric in three years and I don't even have my uncle on WhatsApp."

Griezmann: Messi 'screwed' when I turned Barca down

Griezmann's move to Barcelona in 2019 came a year after the forward made a documentary, 'La Decision', to reveal whether he had decided to leave Atletico Madrid or not.

He declared he was staying, for what proved to be a final season at Atleti, and it's a decision which Grezimann said impacted Messi, who had asked Barca's hierarchy to sign the player.

"I spoke with Leo when I arrived," Griezmann added. "He told me that when I turned down the first chance to go [to Barcelona], he was screwed because he had asked for it publicly. But he told me he was with me and I notice it every day.

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"I wanted to show [in the Decision documentary] that deciding to go to one team or another is very complicated. People thought it was a game and that I laughed at the fans. I just wanted to show how a player does not know what to do and what to decide. Your wife, your parents, your children talk to you but in the end you decide.

"After the documentary my parents got angry with me because they didn't understand what I did when filming the documentary. Besides, they wanted to see me at Barcelona."

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