Atletico Madrid president Enrique Cerezo has left the door open to a potential move for Barcelona’s Antoine Griezmann, although he confessed such a move would be extremely difficult to pull off.
Griezmann is up for sale this summer as Barcelona look to drastically cut costs to re-sign Lionel Messi, and the idea of a swap deal between the Frenchman and Atletico Madrid’s Saul Niguez was gaining traction earlier in the month.
Negotiations between the two clubs were intense but ultimately fruitless, with Barcelona insisting Atletico should have to pay some extra money on top to re-sign Griezmann. But Los Rojiblancos were having none of it and put the talks on hold.
These days, the idea of a Griezmann/Saul swap has cooled down, but speaking to COPE, Cerezo confessed that it is still a possibility if the two sides can overcome the significant obstacles between them.
“We do not rule out anything, but what we can say is that it is not an easy signing,” Cerezo said. “We are waiting for news, not only from Griezmann, but from any player, but as I said, it is a difficult operation.”
Griezmann is believed to be keen on a return to Atletico, with whom he blossomed into one of the game’s deadliest strikers before leaving for Barcelona in a £107m deal back in 2019, and manager Diego Simeone is personally pushing for the deal to get done.
Barcelona are open to selling but are reluctant to take too much of a loss on Griezmann, despite the fact they are literally desperate to slash their wage budget to re-sign Messi.
In the meantime, both players have been offered around Europe. Sources have confirmed to 90min that Griezmann’s agent has spoken to a handful of Premier League sides, with Chelsea, Manchester City and Liverpool all being made aware of his availability.
As of yet, the response to that offer has been minimal, whereas there has been plenty of interest from England in Saul.
Alongside Chelsea and Liverpool, Manchester United are understood to be in contact with the 26-year-old’s agent to discuss the possibility of a summer transfer.