Barcelona are reportedly set to complete the signing of Atletico Madrid striker Antoine Griezmann on July 1, the day his £107m release clause comes into effect.

By 90Min
June 26, 2019

Barcelona are reportedly set to complete the signing of Atletico Madrid striker Antoine Griezmann on July 1, the day his £107m release clause comes into effect. 

Griezmann revealed his desire to leave Los Rojiblancos on social media before the end of the season, despite signing a five-year contract extension just last year in the aftermath of the infamous 'La Decision' video - when he chose to stay at Atletico over joining Barca. 

However, his decision to leave now has long been seen as a ploy to finally join the Spanish champions and, according to a report from the Telegraph, a contract has been in place between the two parties for two months, with a reliance on the release clause prompting the delay.

This comes in direct opposition to what Barca president Josep Maria Bartomeu said just last week when questioned about the Griezmann saga. 

Speaking to RAC 1, as quoted by Marca, Bartomeu proclaimed: "We've always said it, we've never spoken to him, there's nothing. We're already seeing how the market is growing these days and weeks.

"We're going through a slow and secure process. We have all of June, July and August. We're in talks and carrying out a strategy, we're also looking at Barcelona B - some players have the possibility to move up into the senior team this year.

"There will be departures and some arrivals."

However, Atletico's CEO has maintained the opposite, affirming that Griezmann will be leaving for one place and one place only - Barcelona. And, should both he and these sources be proved correct, it would be sure to cast doubt over the prospect of Neymar's high-profile return to Catalonia from Paris Saint-Germain. 

On Tuesday, news of a 'verbal agreement' regarding a five-year deal for the Brazilian at Barca broke, but the stumbling block of a fee remains. And, with Griezmann's arrival imminent, it now seems impossible for the club to broker a deal with PSG without including players of their own, such as Philippe Coutinho and Ousmane Dembele, the pair brought in back in 2017 with the money garnered from Neymar.

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