French international Antione Griezmann has been heavily linked to clubs such as Manchester United and Barcelona. During the world cup summer, it was reported that the 27-year-old was close to signing a deal with Premier League club Manchester United.
The speculations have once again arisen. Griezmann seems to only have eyes on one club, Barcelona. Although, it is worth mentioning that he still has a running contract with current Europa League winners Atletico Madrid until 30th June 2023.
Antoine Griezmann was a clear target for Manchester United after winning the Europa League at the end of last season. During the summer Jose Mourinho was desperate to get his man into his team.
Mourinho was willing to pay an £88m transfer fee and also offer Atletico Madrid a player from the United squad. This player, incidentally, has still not been unveiled. However, Atletico was then hit with a transfer ban. Following this, the club was concerned that they would not be able to sign a replacement.
Griezmann struggling to choose
The decision between Manchester United and Barcelona was hard for the French star, as he commented that it was “very difficult” to turn down Barcelona. When considering the offer Athelti fans booed him at the final La Liga game against Eibar.
Griezmann said due to the support he received at Atletico Madrid from manager Diego Simeone and teammate Diego Godín that he was persuaded to stay. It was reported that talks have already been in place about the move from Atletico to Barcelona.
Griezmann was brought by Atletico Madrid in 2014 from Real Sociedad for £27m. His market value has since risen to around £135m. Antoine Griezmann is a fundamental part of Atletico Madrid, and he fits perfectly into Simeone’s tactics.
He is easily one of the best players in the La Liga division, scoring eight goals, five assists for the La Liga and four goals, two assists in the UEFA Champions League in the current 18/19 season.
In the 17/18 season scoring nineteen goals, nine assist in the La Liga, and two goals, two assist in the UEFA Champions League. And six goals, four assist in the EUROPA league. It’s no wonder the young French men was a candidate for the Ballon d’Or this year.
Could friendship cause a move?
It’s no secret that Antoine Griezmann and Paul Pogba have a close friendship. During the World Cup Griezmann praised Pogba for his leadership skills. He stated that he was surprised at how vocal the 25-year-old midfielder was in the dressing room. Griezmann commented “Paul has really moved up a notch in the dressing room. He had the right words, which has pushed us,”.
Due to their close friendship Pogba avoided eye contact with Griezmann when giving the team speech “Every time he speaks, I want to laugh,” said the Atletico Madrid striker. “Paul is so used to the funny, which is why it surprises me… It is for this reason that when he speaks, Paul never looked at me. He knows that I would have a small smile, due to which he can laugh at any time.”
Speculations continue as thoughts of Pogba encouraging Griezmann to join United if offered the opportunity.
The French international continues to shine at Atletico Madrid under the management of Diego Simone and has commented “I want to win a title. I think that I can with Atletico. I still have a lot to learn from the coach”.
Although there are no current battles for the French star between United or Barcelona, Barcelona is still extremely interested in Antoine. Their interest will have only increased after the World Cup final. Whether a not a move will take place this January transfer window or during the summer remains speculative.