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Semedo may hold key to Barcelona deals for Griezmann and Neymar

19:15 EAT 01/07/2019
Neymar Nelson Semedo Antoine Griezmann
The right-back's inclusion in a deal for the France star would get a transfer done, and in turn potentially help in the pursuit of the PSG attacker

Nelson Semedo may hold the key to Barcelona’s summer pursuit of both Atletico Madrid striker Antoine Griezmann and Paris Saint-Germain forward Neymar.

Griezmann remains likely to join the Liga champions, with an agreement between the France international and Barca on personal terms having already been reached.

However, despite that agreement, Barca have yet to finalise a deal with Atletico, which prevents any announcement of a Griezmann transfer on Monday, or possibly even this week.

Currently, Goal can confirm that Barcelona have offered Atletico a fee of €126 million (£113m/$143m), which is more than Griezmann’s €120m release clause.

However, Barca are offering that deal as a split payment, rather than up front, which Atletico are less interested in accepting.

The capital club want to re-invest the Griezmann fee directly into the squad, including a move for Benfica starlet Joao Felix, and are requiring the €120m in full.

However, Barca are hesitant to pull the trigger on such a move, as paying the release clause in full this summer would make their pursuit of Neymar much more difficult.

Barca are hoping to land both the France and Brazil internationals this pre-season, and splitting the payment for Griezmann this summer would allow the Catalan club to offer more money for the PSG star.

However, another option for Barca exists if they want to get Griezmann over the line without paying the entire release clause.

That option is including Semedo in a deal with Atletico, who as Goal previously reported, has the eye of the capital club.

However, sources tell Goal the situation with Barca has not changed – the Liga champions do not want to include Portugal international Semedo in any transfer.

Semedo’s development this season has the club optimistic about his long-term future, while there currently is no natural replacement in the squad for the right-back, leaving Barca unwilling to part with him at the current time.

That leaves the Griezmann situation in limbo for the moment with both teams holding firm – Barca do not want to hand over Semedo or pay the release clause in full this summer while Atletico will not accept the fee in installments.

Barca are therefore unable to announce Griezmann today, and do not have a timetable on when a deal will be completed, short of reluctantly including Semedo in the move.