Hmm, this is an interesting tactic from Barcelona.
On Saturday the Catalan club released a statement about Atletico Madrid and France striker Antoine Griezmann.
The forward has long been linked with a move to Barca and media reports in Spain have gone into overdrive regarding a move to the Nou Camp for the 26-year-old.
Below is the statement from Barca in full.
FC Barcelona strongly denies the information that has appeared over the course of the last few hours in different media regarding Atletico Madrid player, Antoine Griezmann, and an alleged deal with our club.
FC Barcelona expresses its objections in the face of these events and reiterates its full respect for the institution of Atletico Madrid.
This feels very similar to the situation with Virgil Van Dijk between Liverpool and Southampton.
Media speculation reached incredible levels back in June 2017 that VVD had agreed to sign for Liverpool, but the Anfield club then issued a public apology to Saints and ended their pursuit of Van Dijk. He then signed for Liverpool in January in a $100 million move.
With Atletico said to be incredibly unhappy that Griezmann continues to be linked with a move to Barca, plus reports suggesting the Madrid club want to report Barcelona to FIFA for an alleged approach for their star striker, it’s not too surprising to see Barca take this very unusual approach to try and calm the situation down.
Will it work? Who knows. Is it likely Griezmann will end up at Barcelona anyway? This statement suggests that the two clubs are in dialogue and Barcelona are trying to patch up their relationship to try and move for Griezmann in the summer.
Call me cynical, but that’s the way I see this.