If Lionel Messi is to leave the Camp Nou, Barcelona could do worse than announce Atletico Madrid’s 26-year-old striker as a replacement.
According to the Daily Mail, that’s exactly the plan the Blaugrana has. Griezmann’s contract contains the usual release clause but from 1st July 2018 the value falls to €100m which has sent the Barcelona hierarchy into planning mode.
Whether the French international can be persuaded to leave Atleti for a rival is another matter. Griezmann’s loyalty to the club is unquestioned. When the club was banned from registering new players by FIFA, Griezmann declared that to leave Atletico Madrid in that situation was to leave them in the lurch.
Having risen to the peak of world football thanks to his club form, he was not about to repay them by leaving despite offers from Manchester United and Real Madrid.
Not that Barca will have it all their own way. Alexandre Lacazette joked recently that he would tell his compatriot to join Arsenal but more genuine threats to Barcelona’s plans come from Real and United and also Chelsea.
With the football world at his feet, Griezmann can move to any club he desires.That’s if he chooses to leave the Wanda Metropolitano…