Barcelona face new challenge with Antoine Griezmann

Barcelona's French midfielder Antoine Griezmann. (Photo by LLUIS GENE / AFP) (Photo by LLUIS GENE/AFP via Getty Images)
Barcelona's French midfielder Antoine Griezmann. (Photo by LLUIS GENE / AFP) (Photo by LLUIS GENE/AFP via Getty Images) /

With the majority of Barcelona players back from their break, the attention turns to the future of many of the players including Antoine Griezmann.

The Frenchman has been the subject of different trade rumors but has yet to be informed the club want to move him on. Regardless, he’s reportedly informed Barça he would only accept one possible destination.

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Griezmann open to Barcelona departure but only for his former side

According to Sport, Griezmann has told Barcelona he would be open to a transfer if and only if it means he returns to Atletico Madrid. It’s both good and bad news for the Catalan side.

The good news is it means Griezmann is open to leaving. The bad news is it’s only to Atletico Madrid.

Both clubs were working on a swap deal with midfielder Saúl Ñíguez going the other way. Talks broke down between them as Barca were asking for a transfer fee, which Atletico were unwilling to include.

The latest development puts Los Colchoneros in the driver’s seat should the Catalans go back to the negotiation table.

It also means that a move to the Premier League is off the table. Given the money English sides are willing to spend, the Spanish giants have lost a number of potential suitors who may have been more open to a deal.

Barça feel like they are in a situation where they need to sell Griezmann because they need to lower their wage bill and he’s the player who will draw the most attention. Other players like Samuel Umtiti, Miralem Pjanic, and Philippe Coutinho are also on their transfer list but are likely to generate little interest because of their injury history, age, or high wages.

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As it stands, Griezmann is expected to take part in Barca’s second preseason game against Girona. They have until August 31 to find an exit for Griezmann and the rest. There is still some time but the deadline is drawing ever closer.