Barcelona's side for the 2019-20 campaign is like a "cheat code in a video game", according to new signing Antoine Griezmann.

The French World Cup winner joined the LaLiga giants this month after they triggered his €120million release clause with Atletico Madrid.

He joins a team rich in attacking talent and is likely to line up alongside a combination of Lionel Messi, Luis Suarez, Ousmane Dembele and Philippe Coutinho in what promises to be a mouth-watering frontline in the forthcoming season.

Griezmann is excited about linking up with his new team-mates and says entertaining the club's supporters is a primary motivation.

"Barcelona are building a team like a cheat code in a video game," he told Marca.  

"We have a good team, great players and then it's the boss that has to decide who plays.

"We'll be ready to enjoy ourselves and make the fans and ourselves happy at all times."

Griezmann was particularly fulsome in his praise of Messi and vowed to strive to reach the dizzying standards set by the Argentina superstar.

"Yes, it will be amazing [to play alongside him]," he added. "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 will be ready to do whatever it takes: for him, for the club and for the players."

Atleti fans are aggrieved by Griezmann's switch to their rivals, which came a year after he had pledged his future to the club, but the 28-year-old insists he will always hold fond memories of his time with Diego Simeone's side.

"I know that there will be whistles [when he returns to the Wanda Metrpolitano]," he added. "It's part of football. They really loved me and when someone leaves, it can hurt.

"It was like that at Real Sociedad. My first visit back wasn't easy, but I will always have Sociedad and Atleti in my heart because they gave me so much."

New Barcelona midfielder Frenkie de Jong has welcomed speculation that Neymar could make a dramatic return to the LaLiga champions.

De Jong, 22, was signed by Barca from Ajax in January for a reported €75million, but only made the move at the end of the season.

Neymar has reportedly told Paris Saint-Germain that he wants to leave the club during the close season, two years after his world-record €222million transfer from Barca.

The Catalan club appear to be keen on bringing the Brazilian superstar back to Camp Nou and De Jong says he would relish the opportunity to play alongside him.

"Of course I would like to play with Neymar," he told Sport. "I think he's a really good player but it isn't up to me to decide if he comes to Barcelona or not."

De Jong will be tasked with supplying a mouth-watering attack in the 2019-20 season, led by Lionel Messi, and the Netherlands international is looking forward to teaming up with a player he considers to be the very best.

"I think he's the best player in the world," he said. "I'm looking forward to playing with all the guys, not only with Messi."

Barca were linked with a move for De Jong's former Ajax team-mate, Matthijs de Ligt, but the 19-year-old opted to join Serie A champions Juventus.

De Jong says he would have loved De Ligt to have joined him at Barca but believes he has made a positive move.

Asked if he was disappointed by De Ligt's decision, De Jong said: "No, I'm not disappointed. Not at all. Of course, I'd be happier if he had decided to join Barcelona, but it's his decision and he made it with his family, his agent and girlfriend.

"I'm happy for him. He's made a great move. I would rather see him at Barcelona but Juventus is a good move for him."

Ousmane Dembele, Samuel Umtiti and Ivan Rakitic have all been included in Barcelona's pre-season tour squad despite speculation they have been offered to Paris Saint-Germain.

The trio, as well as Malcom and Nelson Semedo, will head to Japan although reports have claimed they are among six Barca players who could be makeweights in a deal to bring Neymar back to Camp Nou.

Philippe Coutinho, the sixth member of the group, is not included in a squad of 26 players named by Ernesto Valverde as he remains on holiday following the Copa America.

Lionel Messi is absent for the same reason, as are Uruguay striker Luis Suarez and Brazil midfielder Arthur, but Antoine Griezmann could make his Barca debut along with fellow new arrival Frenkie de Jong.

Neymar, meanwhile, is not in PSG's squad for Saturday's pre-season game against Nurnberg despite the forward saying he is almost 100 per cent fit after missing the Copa America due to an ankle injury.

PSG said the club will "take appropriate action" against the Brazil star after he failed to report to pre-season training on time, although Neymar's father said the Ligue 1 champions knew when he would be arriving.

Barca's first pre-season game ahead of the 2019-20 campaign is against Premier League side Chelsea in the Rakuten Cup on Tuesday.

Three days later, Barcelona face a reunion with former players David Villa and Andres Iniesta when they take on Japanese side Vissel Kobe.

The defending LaLiga champions will then kick off the new league season away to Athletic Bilbao on August 16.

The Court of Arbitration for Sport has rejected the Palestine Football Association president's appeal against a 12-month ban for "inciting hatred and violence" against Lionel Messi.

Ahead of Argentina's scheduled pre-World Cup friendly against Israel in June 2018, Jibril Rajoub spoke out about the match amid the conflict and political tension between Israelis and Palestinians.

The match was due to take place in Teddy Stadium, Jerusalem, a ground built on land said to have belonged to a Palestinian village before its destruction in 1948.

Rajoub urged fans to target Messi and incited them to burn shirts bearing the Barcelona star's name, with the match ultimately being cancelled.

FIFA received a complaint from the Israeli Football Association and Rajoub was given a 12-month ban from all matches at any level until August 23, 2019, while also being fined 20,000 Swiss francs (€18,056).

His appeal to FIFA was rejected in September, two months before he raised the case with the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS).

Rajoub has again been unsuccessful in fighting the punishment, with the CAS panel adjudging him to have "failed to establish that any procedural violations were committed in the proceedings before the FIFA disciplinary committee...  that could justify the annulment of such decisions".

CAS, in its statement, added: "Accordingly, the CAS panel dismissed the appeal and confirmed FIFA appeal committee decision of 24 September 2018."

Antoine Griezmann feels it will be an "incredible joy" to team up with Lionel Messi after finally completing his move to Barcelona.

Griezmann signed a five-year deal with Barca on Friday after the LaLiga champions triggered the €120million release clause in his Atletico Madrid contract.

Atletico have argued Barca owe them €80m more as they claim the Catalan club opened negotiations with Griezmann before his release clause dropped on July 1.

The row is expected to continue but Griezmann, speaking ahead of his official unveiling, indicated he is keen to get on the pitch with Barca captain Messi.

"Very happy and looking forward to seeing what Messi is like on a day-to-day basis in training," Griezmann told Barcelona's club website. "Playing next to him is an incredible joy.

"For me, it's a big club and I hope to help it continue being big - or even get even bigger. I'm really looking forward to working with my new team-mates and with the boss and playing at Camp Nou and hopefully winning a lot of trophies.

"I like to have fun on the field and off it, in the dressing room. I like to play with joy and I hope to bring a lot of joy to my team-mates and the fans. I hope we have fun together."

Griezmann will undergo his medical on Sunday before a formal presentation and media conference, with the France forward thrilled to be reuniting with international team-mates Samuel Umtiti and Ousmane Dembele.

"I'm very happy and very excited, looking forward to working with the squad and meeting my new team-mates, so very happy," he added.

"A new challenge, new targets. Important things and I hope I can do as well as I can as I have been doing for my club and country.

"With Sam and Ousmane, I have a very good relationship with both of them. I'm looking forward to seeing them."

Lionel Messi should join Inter if he wants to play with Lautaro Martinez, says the latter's agent.

Martinez has been linked with Barcelona, although Friday's capture of Atletico Madrid forward Antoine Griezmann may end that speculation.

Messi and Martinez teamed up at the Copa America as Argentina reached the semi-finals before losing to hosts Brazil.

Beto Yaque, Martinez's representative, previously confirmed Barcelona have shown interest in his client, but the agent said the striker will be staying put at Inter.

"He can't wait to start with [new Inter head coach Antonio] Conte," Yaque told FC Inter News. "Messi's words? Being praised by the best in the world is beautiful and very satisfying.

"Lautaro was extremely happy. These words gave him contentment and the desire to work even harder to improve, learn new details and aim to achieve the goals he set himself one day.

"Lautaro only thinks about Inter. He is happy at Inter and dreams big. Conte called him to tell him how to work, that he relies on him and that he is very happy to have him on the team.

"It is true that there is interest on the part of the Blaugrana for Martinez. None of the Spanish club has contacted us officially. They are rumours that somehow we know to be truthful. But I repeat: Lautaro remains in Milan.

"Let's close it with a joke: if Messi wants to play with Martinez, then he goes to Inter. Let's hope. It would be great for the Nerazzurri if that happened!"

Inter have confirmed former captain Mauro Icardi is free to leave, along with midfielder Radja Nainggolan, with the club reportedly interested in Manchester United striker Romelu Lukaku and Roma's Edin Dzeko.

"What changes if Lukaku and Dzeko arrive? I believe that there must always be healthy competition," Yaque added.

"Nowhere in the world does anyone have the place bought or insured. I know perfectly well that Inter can negotiate huge level strikers, but I believe blindly in Lautaro's qualities and in what he can give."

Inter signed Nicolo Barella from Cagliari on Friday, the midfielder joining initially on loan although the club have an obligation to complete a permanent deal potentially worth up to €50million for the Italy international.

When Paris Saint-Germain made their world-record €222million move for Neymar in 2017, Barcelona were caught off-guard as the Ligue 1 giants paid the forward's release clause and left the Catalans powerless.

Barca could only sit and watch as the Brazilian made his exit, stepping from the shadow of Lionel Messi in the hope of usurping his former team-mate and Cristiano Ronaldo in the battle for the Ballon d'Or.

While things haven't exactly gone to plan for Neymar in Paris, Barca certainly appear to have learned from their mistake with respect to release clauses and the opportunity they present clubs willing to spend big.

Friday's announcement of Antoine Griezmann's arrival also brought confirmation of the club inserting a whopping €800m release clause in the Frenchman's contract.

Every player in Spanish football must have such a clause in their contract and, while they do not always come into play in a transfer, they can give clubs an automatic position of strength - or weakness.

Here, we examine the biggest release clauses in football and, although transfer fees continue to inflate, it will probably be a while before we see any of these figures matched...

 

€1billion - Karim Benzema

Perhaps surprisingly, no player has a bigger release clause than Benzema. Real Madrid would be able to demand up to £1bn if another club wished to attain the Frenchman's services.

Despite enjoying a solid 2018-19 season in which he scored 21 LaLiga goals, Madrid shouldn't be worried about another team triggering that monumental figure, given for a comparable figure you could buy almost any club on Earth.

 

€800million - Antoine Griezmann

It has been a deal nearly two years in the making, but Griezmann is finally a Barca player.

It's been a chaotic saga, which included Atletico reporting Barca to FIFA in 2017, a narcissistic and contrived documentary that saw the Frenchman commit to Los Colchoneros last year and finally the two clubs squabbling about release clauses.

Atletico are convinced Barca and Griezmann struck a deal in March when the player's buyout figure was €200m, meaning they feel entitled to that fee rather than the €120m deposited at LaLiga headquarters on Friday.

Regardless of the outcome of that wrangle, Griezmann's Barca release clause stands at €800m, even more than Messi's.

 

€750million - Luka Modric and Brahim Diaz

The reigning Ballon d'Or winner, Modric is the joint-second most valuable player in Madrid's squad - in terms of contractual release fees.

But curiously, the player he is tied with is Brahim, the January arrival from Manchester City. The young Spaniard featured only a handful of times in the second half of the season and there have been reports he could leave the club already.

It's fair to say it will not take €750m to lure the youngster away.

 

€700million - Lionel Messi, Vinicius Junior, Isco and Marco Asensio

When Messi entered the final year of his Barca contract in July 2017, the club remained publicly very calm about the prospect of him leaving on a Bosman deal at the end of the 2017-18 season.

Perhaps it was never really in doubt, as they did eventually tie him down in November 2017, but in the months afterwards there were murmurings that Real Madrid had been keeping tabs on the situation.

But Barca managed to insert a €700m release clause into Messi's deal. It might not be on the same level as Benzema's, but it should be enough to deter bidders, while the same can be said of three of Madrid's brightest young stars Isco, Marco Asensio and Vinicius Junior, who have identical figures in their contracts.

 

€500million - Gerard Pique, Sergi Roberto, Sergio Busquets, Gareth Bale, Toni Kroos and Dani Ceballos

In the two years since Neymar left for PSG, Barca have tied Pique, Sergi Roberto and Busquets all down to new contracts with massive €500m release clauses.

But three Real Madrid players already had clauses for the same amount in their contracts, highlighting that Los Blancos have been rather more prepared than Barca for the situation that arose with Neymar's departure.

Bale - once the world's most expensive player - is among them, with Kroos and Ceballos also boasting hefty buyout clauses at half a billion Euros.

 

€400million - Ousmane Dembele, Philippe Coutinho, Arthur and Frenkie de Jong

Dembele and Coutinho are living proof of Barca's determination not to get caught off-guard ever again like they did with Neymar.

Signed for €105m and €160m, respectively, the pair are two of Barca's three most expensive purchases ever.

Granted, €400m is the smallest in this list, but Barca can feel safe in the knowledge that - at least for the time being - they are fairly well protected from unwanted advances.

However, neither has truly set LaLiga alight since joining the club, so Barca would be unlikely to demand the full release clause of either player at this point.

It remains to be seen how De Jong settles at the club, but Arthur has been a big hit in his one season.

Antoine Griezmann is about to become a brilliant problem for Barcelona.

LaLiga's reigning champions have finally brought an end to the saga around the France star, signing him on a five-year deal after activating his release clause of €120million.

Barca have effectively been pursuing Griezmann for the best part of 18 months, having been turned down by the forward last year, who then informed the world he would be staying at Atletico Madrid via his documentary 'The Decision'.

Ernesto Valverde would have been forgiven for preferring not to have Griezmann in his side after such a high-profile snubbing of Camp Nou, but a year later - and with his own position under scrutiny after last season's Champions League failure - it is now imperative he gets the best out of the former Real Sociedad man.

Trying to squeeze Griezmann into the team will be no simple matter, though - especially if Barca also manage to bring Neymar back to the club. So, just how will Valverde go about using him? Here are three possible line-ups for 2019-20...

1. 4-3-3 - 'Old Faithful'... without Suarez

Valverde might have been criticised for not always encouraging Barca to stick to their heralded style, but 4-3-3 remains his most consistent formation, at least in LaLiga.

The right-hand side will be reserved for Lionel Messi as long as he wants it, of course, and Griezmann is unlikely to be shifted to the left. Valverde generally prefers right-footed players on that side, specifically Ousmane Dembele - and, just maybe, Neymar - who can offer a burst of speed to destabilise deep blocks of defence.

It means Griezmann would probably have to move into the central attacking role and therefore relegate Luis Suarez to the bench. A bold call it may be, but Suarez is 32 and just came off his lowest goalscoring season in four years. Perhaps the competition would bring out the best in him.

2. 4-4-2 - The key to the Champions League

Valverde has regularly favoured 4-4-2 in some of Barca's most challenging matches, particularly away games in the Champions League.

While these have proved successful to an extent - beating Manchester United away last season, for instance - their safety-first approach was not exactly a sound one in the 4-0 thrashing by Liverpool or the capitulation against Roma the year before.

Griezmann could help matters there. He is an expert in playing as part of a front two in major European ties from his Atletico days: against Pep Guardiola's Bayern Munich in 2016 he knew when to press, when to track back and how to stay cool to capitalise on rare goalscoring chances that would make up for any defensive lapses further back. Playing that role alongside Messi would make Barca formidable.

3. 4-2-3-1 - The Neymar dream

Barca are a long way from signing both Griezmann and Neymar. Indeed, they will have to raise funds and lower the wage bill by selling two or three players – or offering them in exchange – before the Brazil star's return can be countenanced seriously.

If they can get him back, though, Valverde will have the option to field an attacking unit of a strength seen nowhere else in world football.

With a double pivot using two of Sergio Busquets, Arthur, Frenkie de Jong and Ivan Rakitic, the stability in midfield Valverde craves will still be there. Ahead of them, Messi could sit as a number 10, with Griezmann to one side and Neymar to the other, and all three given licence to roam. Suarez can then keep his place at the head of the attack.

It might feel a little gung-ho for Valverde's liking, but seriously - how many teams would be able to stop a front four like this?

After what feels like years of flirting and transfer speculation, Antoine Griezmann is finally a Barcelona player and it is a move that could ruffle a few feathers at Camp Nou.

Griezmann's arrival comes 13 months after the France star committed his future to Atletico in a documentary, rebuffing Barca and signing a new five-year contract at the time.

But, with Atletico's season fading away in May, Griezmann and the Madrid club published a video to Twitter in which the forward confirmed his desire to leave.

Barca's failure in the Champions League and Copa del Rey was proof of a need for Ernesto Valverde's squad to be improved and there can be little doubt his arrival achieves that.

However, there are reasons for trepidation for several of Griezmann's new team-mates, as we have examined…

 

Philippe Coutinho

Despite a promising start, it is fair to say Coutinho's time at Camp Nou has not gone to plan since joining from Liverpool for a reported €160m in January 2018. The Brazil international has failed to nail down a regular spot in midfield or attack, starting only 22 league games in 2018-19, often filling in either role with minimal success to make him a frequent target for jeers. If Barca see Coutinho as more of a forward, there may not be space for him with Griezmann's arrival, with first-team opportunities likely to be even trickier to come by. Linked with a move, the former Liverpool star would not be short of suitors, particularly in England.

Ousmane Dembele

Like Coutinho, Dembele was brought in as part of the post-Neymar splurge. While the winger is undoubtedly talented and has shown flashes of his potential, his Barca career has been interrupted by injuries and reports of immaturity. Few can argue Griezmann is not a model professional, even if his behaviour over the past year or so has angered Atleti and his new employers. Perhaps, as an international team-mate and fellow World Cup-winner, Griezmann might just be the influence Dembele, whose move could eventually be worth €145m, needs to find his best.

Luis Suarez

In the opening months of last season Suarez showed signs of decline, as he endured a couple of uncharacteristic droughts. Thankfully for Barca he recovered and has managed to score 21 goals in LaLiga, though his form in the Champions League remains a concern, the Uruguayan netting just five times in his past 29 games in the competition.

While there is no suggestion Griezmann is set to replace Suarez, the fact the Frenchman could fill in for him and allow him more rest can only be a good thing, particularly with the former Ajax star now 32 years old. However, for the two to co-exist, they may need to bury the hatchet, with Suarez unimpressed by Griezmann's efforts to show respect to Uruguay - a country he professes to love - after his goal against them for France at the World Cup.

 

Lionel Messi

The main man, the superstar and the one who makes everything tick. None of that will change if Griezmann arrives. Messi was inspirational again last season, scoring 36 times in 34 LaLiga games. He was used a little more sparingly and Griezmann's potential arrival could allow him more rest, but the Argentine's status as top dog will certainly remain either way. Nevertheless, another superstar forward might just alleviate some of the goal-scoring burden.

Malcom

A transfer that promised much has yielded little. Brazilian winger Malcom is almost certain to leave Barca over the next month or so, and his departure will surely be hastened now a deal for Griezmann has been struck. A gifted player that Barca pipped Roma to at the last minute in July 2018, it has been pretty clear from the outset that he does not have Valverde's faith. Links with Sevilla soon vanished after Monchi - the scorned sporting director of the Giallorossi last year - returned to the Ramon Sanchez Pizjuan, though he will likely have plenty of options should the Catalan decide to offload him.

Lionel Messi deserves to win the Ballon d'Or this year, according to Barcelona and Brazil great Rivaldo.

Messi enjoyed another stellar season for Barca, scoring 51 goals in all competitions as the Spanish giants claimed the LaLiga title.

However, they fell short in the Champions League and lost the Copa del Rey final, while Argentina could only clinch third place at the Copa America.

Despite that, Rivaldo believes Messi should be awarded an outright record sixth Ballon d'Or.

"In my opinion, the Ballon D'Or of this season is Messi for what he has done," the 1999 winner said, courtesy of Betfair.

"He didn't win the Champions League, but because it is an individual prize he scored a lot of goals, important goals."

Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo have each won five Ballons d'Or, claiming the prize in every year since 2008 before Luka Modric ended their run in 2018.

Rivaldo hailed the superstar duo for their performances, saying: "They are such great players. I like them both.

"Messi always makes the difference at Barcelona and Ronaldo at every club and the national team – Juventus and Portugal.

"It's going to be thrilling again. When you talk about them it's for something good, they both score so many goals."

Dani Alves has criticised Lionel Messi for being "disrespectful" of Brazil with his controversial comments at the Copa America.

Argentina star Messi railed against "corruption" and the quality of officiating after harshly being dismissed for an altercation with Chile's Gary Medel in Saturday's bronze medal match.

Crucial refereeing decisions also went against La Albiceleste in their semi-final loss to host nation and eventual champions Brazil.

CONMEBOL – football's governing body in South America – branded the forward's allegations of corruption "unacceptable" and Brazil boss Tite urged him to show more respect.

Veteran right-back Alves, Messi's team-mate for close to a decade at Barcelona, echoed that view.

"A friend is not always right just because he's a friend. You can say it in the heat of the moment, but I still won't agree," the Brazil captain told SporTV.

"Firstly, he's disrespecting an institution such as the Selecao, in my view.

"Secondly, he's being disrespectful with several professionals who put a lot of things aside so they could be there fighting for a dream.

"I'm a friend who always tells the truth when it's due, and I think he was wrong for saying these things."

Argentina overcame Chile in the third-place play-off but Messi did not join his team-mates in collecting a medal.

Alves and Brazil went on to beat Peru in the final, winning the tournament for the first time since 2007.

UEFA has denied reports it would entertain inviting Argentina into its European competitions following the 2019 Copa America.

Argentina finished third at the Copa but captain and star man Lionel Messi voiced complaints following the semi-final and the third-place play-off, during which he was controversially sent off.

Messi described the officiating during the loss to Brazil as "bull****" and suggested his side were victims of "corruption" after beating Chile, which led to a strong rebuttal from CONMEBOL who described his comments as "unacceptable" and "unfounded".

It was subsequently reported UEFA could invite Argentina to enter its Nations League.

However, European football's governing body has denied this is the case, insisting such an offer would never be forthcoming.

A statement read: "There is no truth whatsoever in the suggestion that Argentina has been asked to participate in UEFA competitions, nor to become a member of UEFA.

"UEFA has never entered into any discussions on this matter and would never do so.

"However, in the spirit of friendship and camaraderie and as an inclusive organisation, UEFA will, of course, invite Argentina as special guests to watch any UEFA competition at any time."

Thiago Silva says it is natural for Lionel Messi to be frustrated with the referee after losing, suggesting Paris Saint-Germain had similar feelings in defeat to Barcelona in 2017.

Argentina great Messi described the officiating in his side's Copa America semi-final loss to Brazil as "bulls***" and suggested his side were victims of "corruption" as he received a controversial red card in the third-place play-off with Chile, which led to a strong rebuttal from CONMEBOL who described his comments as "unacceptable" and "unfounded".

"Maybe I'm paying for what I said last time," the Barcelona star said.

Brazil defender Silva, responding to the comments, suggested Messi had benefited from such decisions in Barca's incredible 6-1 Champions League win over PSG two years ago.

"This is difficult for us to comment on," he said after Brazil's 3-1 final win over Peru. "Sometimes in defeat, we try to focus on other people.

"I think he did not say it out of spite, but we are sad because, in the game we lost 6-1 to Barcelona, he played the referee, which, in my opinion, was ridiculous.

"But we did not give a statement that the referee was in favour of Barcelona. I think you have to show respect.

"Brazil do not have five stars [from World Cup wins] at random - none of them have been stolen. It was played on the pitch."

Silva's PSG and Brazil team-mate Marquinhos added: "[Messi] is a good person, but his statements were unfortunate and we Brazilian players did not like that.

"We lost in the World Cup against Belgium and there were also refereeing errors in his favour with Barcelona. I did not hear him talk about corruption at that time."

Peru coach Ricardo Gareca also weighed in on Messi's outburst following the defeat to Brazil.

"Messi is an authoritative voice, that does not mean I agree with him," Gareca said. "I respect him a lot - not just the player but the person. He seems to be very focused.

"But apart from the opinion we have of Messi, we can agree or disagree with him.

"I like that we would know what we have to improve in South America, but that does not necessarily mean that there is corruption or that we are corrupt.

"There is more and more information from Europe, where our children and grandchildren know more and more European players, and it seems that we want to imitate them in everything.

"There are good things in Europe, but we also have good things in South American football, too. I would like to defend South American football.

"If you speak of corruption, you must have convincing evidence. Football is a game and an individual can go wrong."

Brazil coach Tite hit back at Lionel Messi, accusing the Argentina star of lacking respect with his allegations of corruption.

Messi railed against "corruption" and "a lack of respect" after controversially being sent off in Argentina's win over Chile in the third-place play-off on Saturday.

In a statement, CONMEBOL dismissed the star's comments as unacceptable and unfounded.

Messi was also furious after Argentina's semi-final loss to eventual champions Brazil, feeling his team were denied two penalties.

Speaking after Brazil beat Peru 3-1 in the final on Sunday, Tite was unhappy with Messi.

"The one that I considered an extraordinary player [Messi], extraterrestrial, put it that way, he has to have a little more respect and to understand and accept when he is beaten," Tite said, via Globo Esporte.

Brazil overcame Peru after goals from Everton and Gabriel Jesus either side of Paolo Guerrero's penalty, before Richarlison sealed the win with a late spot-kick.

However, they were also reduced to 10 men in the second half when Jesus was sent off.

Tite said Brazil had also had to deal with decisions going against them, including the harsh handball call on Thiago Silva that led to Peru's equaliser from the spot.

"We were hampered in a series of games, including the World Cup, so be very careful. I'm responding directly, I'm responding to the greatness he has," he said.

"We played clean against Argentina the whole time. I want to understand this as a moment of... he was sent off unjustly. He didn't deserve it, who deserved it was [Gary] Medel, so just be careful.

"We had to go through officiating today, too. We made a legal goal against Venezuela, everyone put it that way. Today, it wasn't a penalty on Thiago, but we went on, calm, watch out, respect."

Casemiro offered a subtle response to Lionel Messi's allegations of corruption after Brazil won the Copa America on Sunday.

Messi was controversially sent off in Argentina's win over Chile in the third-place play-off on Saturday before railing against "corruption" and "a lack of respect".

In a statement, CONMEBOL dismissed the star's comments as unacceptable and unfounded.

After Brazil beat Peru 3-1 to win their ninth South American title, Casemiro tried not to be drawn on Messi's comments, but offered a brief response.

"Those who have a mouth speak what they want," the midfielder told reporters.

"It's not my turn to speak. It's a delicate issue."

Goals from Everton and Gabriel Jesus and a Richarlison penalty saw Brazil past Peru despite a second-half red card for the Manchester City forward.

The officiating has drawn plenty of criticism at the Copa America, but Casemiro was unwilling to judge the referees' performances.

"It's not for me to say if the referee did well," he said.

"We all try to do the best and we must congratulate Peru for the great Copa they did."

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