bleacherreport: Atletico Madrid forward Antoine Griezmann has reportedly offered himself to several top clubs around Europe, but Barcelona have no interest in his services.
Citing sources close to the Catalans and the player, ESPN FC’s Moises Llorens and Sam Marsden reported Barcelona are looking at younger and cheaper options than Griezmann. The report also stated the 27-year-old would be willing to take a pay cut, but the Catalans will prioritise moves for Luka Jovic of Frankfurt or Maxi Gomez of Celta Vigo.
On Saturday, French daily L’Equipe reported Barcelona were interested in the France international (h/t football writer Jeremy Smith):
Not this again! @lequipe reporting that the Griezmann to Barcelona deal could be back on. Club and player said to be re-interested after Atletico’s CL elimination. Buy-out clause €120m up to June 2019.
— Jeremy Smith (@jeremysmith98) March 16, 2019
As Llorens explained, Griezmann snubbed Barcelona last summer, signing a new long-term contract with Atletico after months of teasing a switch to the Catalans.
The former Real Sociedad man announced his decision in a TV special called ‘La Decision,’ something that did not sit well with the Blaugrana or their fans.
A recent poll by Sport revealed many Barcelona fans are no longer interested in the ace scorer:
SPORT | صفقة غريزمان لبرشلونة ؟ إستطلاع
80% لا، نهائيا
12% نعم pic.twitter.com/H7icd916be
— FCB World (@FCBW_A7) March 17, 2019
Blogger Rafael Hernandez doubts the Blaugrana would make a move for Griezmann in the summer given their current financial state:
“Whether for France or for Atletico, for Deschamps or Simeone, Griezmann slides adeptly and uncomplainingly into the system. When Ronaldo is on fire, by contrast, he is the system.” 👌https://t.co/JxuZoQgZjO
— Ed Malyon (@eaamalyon) March 13, 2019
Griezmann committed himself to the Atletico project at the start of the season, but it hasn’t been a complete success during the ongoing campaign. They’ve fallen behind Barcelona in the La Liga title race and exited the UEFA Champions League after blowing a two-goal lead in the return leg against Juventus.
The fiasco in Turin saw Griezmann see little of the ball in dangerous areas, as the forward spent much of his time helping out his defenders. Atletico created almost no chances and ran into an unleashed Cristiano Ronaldo, who scored a hat-trick in the 3-0 win.
That contest highlighted the difference between the two attackers, according to sportswriter Ed Malyon:
If a Barcelona transfer is off the table, it’s unclear what other options Griezmann might have. Bayern Munich are expected to invest heavily in the transfer market and have a good history with French players, but their transfer record―spent on compatriot Corentin Tolisso―is about a third of his current €120 million buyout clause.
The Premier League could be an option, and Manchester United are likely to splash the cash in the summer. Real Madrid, meanwhile, could be the biggest spenders of them all after a horror 2018-19 campaign; Griezmann may not be keen on a move to Atletico’s biggest rivals, however.
A return to France to join Paris Saint-Germain could also be an option.
Source: Published by bleacherreport