Real Madrid are reportedly putting plans in place to swoop for Atletico Madrid star Antoine Griezmann this summer under the noses of Barcelona.
The 26-year-old hasn’t quite had the season expected of him to this point, as he’s managed just nine goals and seven assists in 25 appearances in all competitions.
Compare that to goal hauls of 26, 32 and 25 in the last three campaigns respectively, the French international has seemingly got some work to do to come close to that again this year.
The drop off could be linked to speculation over his future, as his name is back in the gossip columns again this weekend. It’s claimed by Diario Gol that Real Madrid president Florentino Perez has a ‘secret pact’ with him which will see the reigning Spanish champions win the race for his signature, while he’ll cost €100m this summer, as per the release clause in his contract.
Marca back up the suggestion that Madrid are keen on beating Barcelona to the signing of Griezmann, and so there may well be a growing concern at the Nou Camp that they could miss out on one of their top targets.
Nevertheless, having signed Ousmane Dembele and Philippe Coutinho in the last two transfer windows, perhaps the Catalan giants will do just fine without another marquee signing for the time being.
It’s also important to note that Marca claim since Atleti reported Barcelona to FIFA over their approach for Griezmann, talks have come to a halt between his representatives and the club.
As a result, coupled with the claim above that Perez has laid the foundations for a move to the Bernabeu, Los Blancos could be set to beat their bitter rivals to a world-class signing in a few months time and it will come as a timely boost given the work Barca have been doing.
From a Madrid perspective, with concerns over Gareth Bale’s injury problems, Karim Benzema’s lack of goals and Cristiano Ronaldo turning 33 next month, a signing like Griezmann is arguably exactly what the club needs this summer amid a worrying slump this season which has seen them fall 19 points behind Barca in La Liga.