Talks between Barcelona and Atletico over a swap deal have broken down and Antoine Griezmann’s return to Atletico Madrid after two seasons appears to be off. Barca is willing to sell Griezmann as the club intends to address a financial crisis by offloading several high-earners.
Recently, the 30-year-old Frenchman was close to making a return to Atletico Madrid via a swap deal with Saul. Before joining Barcelona in somewhat contentious circumstances in 2019, Griezmann spent five seasons and scored 133 goals at the Madrid football club. About the possibility of a transfer the French World Cup winner had already spoken with Simeone and had his heart set on the move, according to reports.
This summer, all but a few key players at Camp Nou are available for the right price, as Joan Laporta and the Barça board’s priority remains to re-sign and re-registering Lionel Messi in a way that does not break the bank or violate La Liga’s strict financial controls over wage budgets.
When asked directly about Griezmann’s return, Atletico president Enrique Cerezo said coyly that “everything is possible.” However, SPORT states that the deal has fallen through, with Barcelona unwilling to let Griezmann leave on the cheap after being stung by Luis Suarez’s move to the Spanish capital last summer.
Atletico Madrid was unable and unwilling to stump up €20 million in addition to fronting a player for Griezmann, as per SPORT reports. According to reports, Barça favored a trade involving forward Joao Felix over one involving Saul.
Griezmann is noted to be one of Barça’s highest-paid players after Messi and has a contract that runs until 2024. With that agreement no longer in place, the forward has become a ‘problem’ for the Catalan club.
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