FC Barcelona are eager to find a way to open the door for Antonin Griezmann this summer, and are heading to Serie E giants Juventus FC for another possible swap deal. Talks with Atletico Madrid took place earlier in the week, shortly after the report surfaced.
As the French forward was preparing to return to Atletico Madrid, Saul Nguyen left for Camp Nou. However, after Barcelona refused to replace the straight player, the two Liga giants could not reach a compromise. They want extra fees for either the avoidance man, or the maximum number of players. Atletico, on the other hand, were unwilling to shoulder the full amount of Griezmann’s salary, and were hoping to share the burden with Barcelona.
According to BrandNow that Barcelona and Atletico Madrid have decided to end their talks, the Catalans are hoping that Juventus will be more willing to agree to their terms for a similar swap deal for Paolo DiBalla. Barcelona want to send a mannequin pack to end their wage bill next season. He is hoping that Debala will be offered a much lower package that will keep him as a French citizen.
On top of his massive salary, Griezmann also angered Rakuten, a key sponsor of the club, when a video surfaced of him and Osmane Dumble making fun of Japanese hotel workers. The Japan-based company is seeking concrete steps from the club, and the renewal of their partnership is in jeopardy.
Griezmann will have to choose one team at a time to please both the club’s other teammates in Japan, Roctin and Konami.
Dibala, meanwhile, had a moderate season with the Juventus last year after a two-month sideline due to a knee injury. He will be looking to join a club that will guarantee more playing time, but he will also face stiff competition in Turin and Barcelona.
Negotiations are in the early stages, and it remains to be seen whether they will bear fruit. Either way, Barcelona need to find a quick solution to their pay cap issues, otherwise they could jeopardize the renewal of Lionel Messi’s contract.