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Barcelona keep Griezmann door open after Man City and PSG rule themselves out of running

16:09 BST 18/05/2019
Antoine Griezmann Atletico Madrid 2018-19
Ernesto Valverde is not ruling out a move to bring a World Cup winning-forward to Camp Nou from La Liga rivals Atletico Madrid

After seeing Manchester City and Paris Saint-Germain rule out moves for Antoine Griezmann, Ernesto Valverde has said “we’ll see what happens” when it comes to Barcelona’s interest in the Atletico Madrid frontman.

A World Cup winner at Wanda Metropolitano has been generating transfer talk for some considerable time.

He appeared to have brought the speculation to a close during the summer of 2018 when stating in a now infamous video reveal that he considered his future to lie in the Spanish capital.

Griezmann committed to a five-year contract with Atletico, forcing the likes of Barcelona to look elsewhere for new recruits.

Speculation has, however, continued to link him with the Camp Nou giants and the 28-year-old has altered his stance to now be pushing for a move at the next available opportunity.

Pep Guardiola and Thomas Tuchel insist they will not be looking to take the France international to Manchester or Paris, but Valverde remains coy when it comes to the Blaugrana’s intentions.

Quizzed on talk of a €125 million move for Griezmann, the Barca boss said: “I do not know if he is coming or not, we are talking about assumptions here.

“He may end up here or he may not. We’ll see what happens.”

Whether Griezmann is targeted or not, fresh faces are expected to arrive in Catalunya during the summer transfer window.

Valverde is in the process, along with his board, of identifying areas that the Liga champions believe they can strengthen in.

He said of the club’s recruitment plans: “I do not know how much there will be to spend as that is an internal matter for the club.

“The idea is to piece together the best possible team taking into account the positives and difficulties that we have encountered.”

Barcelona seeking further reinforcements should concern their domestic rivals.

A Liga and Copa del Rey double remains on the cards for Valverde’s side, with a cup final date with Valencia pencilled in for May 25.

Two trophies would make the season a success for the Catalan giants, even when taking into account a stunning Champions League semi-final defeat to Liverpool which saw them surrender a three-goal first leg advantage

“The season has been very good,” said Valverde.

“We fell short in the Champions League but we won the Super Cup, the league with three games to spare and have the possibility of winning the cup.

“We had ambition in the Champions League and arrived in May with possibilities, as was our initial plan, but we suffered a major blow.”

Barca will bring the curtain down on their 2018-19 La Liga campaign on Sunday when they travel to Eibar.