Manchester United remain keen on Antoine Griezmann and they are prepared to battle Barcelona for his signature.
Spanish sources believe that Barca are in pole position to land the Atetico Madrid star, although the Madrid giants are far from pleased with their La Liga rivals and are reporting them over a possible illegal approach.
This has came after Barca official Guillermo Amor was quoted as saying that contact had been made after a Catalan newspaper reported that the club’s president Josep Maria Bartomeu had met with Griezmann’s family.
Football INDEX Watch – Antoine Griezmann – Is just outside the top-ten at £4.12
“If that’s what i said, it’s possible…” Amor said.
“Maybe there’s been a meeting and things have advanced, although I don’t know. There’s a good understanding, maybe there have been talks.
“Rumours are inevitable in football. In the case of Griezmann, there are a lot of players we could be talking with, initiating some kind of relationship with if there’s an opportunity.
“We’re obliged to have contact with players. It’s something which is done.”
This came after Atletico boss Diego Simeone confirmed that French forward was expected to leave.
“Of course he can leave at some point, like Diego Costa and Arda Turan did in their day,” Simeone told L’Equipe.
“I love watching my players grow, and if one of them tells me that they have the unique opportunity of playing for a certain team, after they did everything they could for me, like Griezmann has done, I’ll say it’s not a problem.”
Griezmann was set to leave Atletico earlier this year, with Manchester United set to seal his signature but he instead decided to stay put as the Spanish club had a transfer ban in place which meant he could not have been replaced.
Now, despite Barca’s confidence – United remain in the race and sources have told me that they believe they are still firmly in the mix for his signature.
Despite the interest of both Barca and United, Griezmann is not expected to move until the summer – but betting wise, the Bookmakers are favouring the Catalans.
Griezmann has been cut into 4-6 by leading bookmaker Coral to sign for Barcelona as his next club and that is a 60% probability. Manchester United are now 7-4 second favourites.
“Punters are convinced that Griezmann’s days at Atletico are numbered as they are backing the Frenchman to join Barcelona who are the favourites to secure the player in what would be a big blow to Manchester United who have eyed the player up for some time,” said Coral’s John Hill.