Football News

Barcelona boss Valverde confirms Griezmann talks “ongoing”

By Mohamed Moallim

Published: 20:29, 19 May 2019

Barcelona manager Ernesto Valverde has confirmed talks to sign Atletico Madrid forward Antoine Griezmann are “ongoing”.

The 28-year-old French forward is set to end a six-year association with Atlético Madrid this summer.

Griezmann saga: Five things to know…

  1. Griezmann joined Atlético Madrid from Real Sociedad in 2014.
  2. He’s gone on to make 257 appearances, registering 133 goals and 50 assists.
  3. Griezmann has lifted three pieces of silverware with Atletico: 2014 Supercopa de España, 2018 Europa League and 2018 UEFA Super Cup.
  4. After speculation of a departure in 2018, he revealed via his ‘La Decision’ show that he would remain at Atlético.
  5. Less than a year later he has changed his mind, with Barcelona strongly tipped as Griezmann’s next club.

Griezmann pledged his long-term future to Los Rojiblancos, whom he’s been part of since relocating from Real Sociedad in 2014, last summer.

His apparent change of heart hasn’t gone down well as Atléti supporters jeered him during their game at Levante, which is likely to be Griezmann’s final appearance for the club.

The 2018 World Cup winner is expected to join Barcelona, whom he was heavily linked with before the 2018/19 season. It could be a while before any potential transfer goes through, but Barça’s head coach has revealed talks are already underway.

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“It is true we have already made contacts,” he told reporters prior to Barcelona’s draw with Eibar.

“It is true that contacts are ongoing, but the season isn’t over yet. We have the Copa Del Rey final still to play. We have the chance of winning two titles and we must try to focus on this issue.

“Afterwards we will have time for everything else – we won’t say anything new when we are talking about players from other teams. We will see (what happens). He (Griezmann) is a great player. We’ve always said so.”

Griezmann’s era

Since becoming part of the Atleti family, Griezmann has developed into one of their most important players.

He’s gone on to make no fewer than 257 appearances in all competitions, registering 133 goals and creating a further 50 for his teammates.

During that period, Atletico lift the 2018 Europa League title and finished runners-up in La Liga twice. Whilst playing under Diego Simeone he became an integral part of the France national team and last summer Griezmann celebrated his nation’s second World Cup crown in Russia.