Griezmann returns to ‘Atleti’ in a surreal market close

BARCELONAAntoine Griezmann leaves Barcelona after the Barça club reached an agreement with Atlético de Madrid, for the loan of the French forward to two seasons, acquiring the mattress club a mandatory purchase option in 2023 of 40 million euros. Atlético will also take over the salary of the player, who received the news concentrated with the French team.

The operation was completed after a day between surreal and dramatic and that was not closed until well after midnight, the final deadline established by LaLiga, because despite the fact that the two clubs processed all the documentation with the employer on time, presenting it in its entirety minutes before twelve, everything was pending the approval of the organization chaired by Javier Tebas until the departure of Saúl Níguez, from Atlético, bound for Chelsea … And that was not closed until that final deadline had been exceeded, at which point 43 minutes after the official closing of the market was definitively dislodged.

Griezmann’s return to Atlético was catapulted onto the stage in the last two days, little contemplated by Atlético himself when there was speculation through an exchange with Joao Félix, who did not accept to negotiate the Madrid entity but accelerated as soon as he agreed to leave from Saúl Ñíguez to London.

For Barça, which in the preceding hours closed the transfers from Emerson Royal to Tottenham and Ilaix Moriba to Leipzig, to accumulate revenues in excess of $ 100 million by adding the names of Junior firpo, Aleñá, Akieme, Konrad, Todibo or Trincao.

The 29-year-old French forward arrived at the Camp Nou in the summer of 2019 for the 120 million euros established in his termination clause with Atlético, a year after he rejected the same operation in the first person. In his two Barça seasons (and the beginning of this one), Griezmann’s performance fell far short of expectations, adding a total of 102 games in which he scored 30 goals but never reaching the brilliance he enjoyed in his first stage as a mattress player. .


Griezmann’s departure did not materialize until the last market day … And after a summer full of speculation that began on July 14, when a negotiation between Barça and Atlético was catapulted into the plane in which an exchange between the French striker and Saúl, who this same Tuesday ended up closing his departure to Chelsea. The difference in valuation between the two players made the agreement impossible, but since then it was clear that the forward’s permanence at the Camp Nou was not at all guaranteed.

The Barça club, either from the offices, the sports management and Ronald Koeman himself, transferred their absolute confidence to him, considering him indisputable in the squad and, once the departure of Leo Messi was finalized, contemplating him as one of the key players in the team. But the economic situation continually kept a change of scenery on the plane.

Griezmann began the official season as a starter and, in fact, completed the first three league games against Real Sociedad, Athletic and Getafe, catapulting himself after this last meeting, and by absolute surprise, his departure from the club.

Barcelona, ​​from the outset and seeking to reinforce its lead while reducing the salary mass and earning money for a transfer, contemplated an exchange operation for Joao Félix with Atlético de Madrid late Monday, whose response was negative … As for getting rid of the young Portuguese soccer player but receptive in negotiating a return of the French to the mattress club.

This Tuesday the contacts between the two clubs were accentuated, to the stupor of the footballer himself, who learned about the situation while he was concentrating with the national team. Sources close to Griezmann himself were first surprised to ESPN Deportes by the matter and later, knowing the movements of Barcelona, ​​open to a change, depending on the conditions and knowing that Diego Simeone sponsored this return in the first person.