Barcelona are reportedly intent on offloading Antoine Griezmann this summer and have offered the Frenchman to Atletico Madrid and Athletic Bilbao.
According to a report from Spanish publication El Gol Digital, La Liga giants Barcelona are planning major restructures to their squad ahead of the upcoming season, which could see a number of current players being axed. And one such star, who could be set for an exit from Camp Nou is forward Antoine Griezmann, with the Catalans offering him to fellow La Liga rivals Atletico Madrid and Athletic Bilbao.
Griezmann signed for Barcelona from Atletico Madrid in the summer of 2019 following a long drawn-out transfer saga. However, the 2018 FIFA World Cup winner hasn’t been able to hit the heights expected of him, following the big money switch. While his debut season was largely sub-par, the 30-year-old has shown signs of form in the 2020/21 campaign, especially since the formation switch to the 3-5-2 by Ronald Koeman.
However, a return of 12 goals and 7 assists from 35 La Liga matches is still not good enough for a player of his quality and ability, especially given the huge outlay that Barcelona made on him. As a result, the Catalans’ hierarchy, under new president Joan Laporta, are seriously considering cutting their losses on the French forward, and have, thus, offered his services to two La Liga rivals in Atletico Madrid and Athletic Bilbao.
Atletico Madrid are no strangers to Griezmann’s quality and prowess. After all, he played some of his finest football under the tutelage of Diego Simeone at the Wanda Metropolitano. In fact, heading into the summer transfer window, the Rojiblancos are themselves intent on re-signing the Frenchman as per recent reports.
So, Barcelona offering him to Atletico will be welcomed by the Colchoneros, who are hoping to team him up with Luis Suarez and unleash the duo on the La Liga defenders. The report goes as far as saying that finances won’t be a problem either for Atleti, thus, hinting that such a move could very well be on the cards.
As for the other club that have been offered Griezmann, Athletic Bilbao are a team that is made of players from the Basque country only. And while Griezmann may be French, he grew up in the Basque region, having come through the youth ranks at Athletic’s local rivals Real Sociedad, meaning a transfer should not be a problem.
The report goes on to add that Los Leones are looking for a marquee addition to bolster their reputation, making Griezmann a viable target for Marcelino’s side. The financial aspect, though, could pose a problem for Athletic, while the lack of European football would be another major roadblock.
It now remains to be seen if Griezmann remains a Barcelona player beyond the ongoing campaign or if he ends up securing a transfer to either Atletico Madrid or Athletic Bilbao, or a different club altogether.