Last summer, it was Manchester United’s pursuit of Paul Pogba that dominated the rumour mill.
Twelve months later and it’s Antoine Griezmann that the Red Devils are chasing.
It was only a few months into the season and United were being linked with Griezmann - despite spending £150 million and smashing the world transfer record.
Griezmann’s strong relationship with the most expensive player in the world, Pogba, was the basis of the speculation but whispers of Griezmann joining him at the Theatre of Dreams have grown stronger and stronger as the campaign has gone on.
And now, the rumours are at boiling point.
Atletico Madrid correspondent, Antonio Ruiz, revealed on Tuesday that Griezmann wants to leave the club this summer. And Griezmann has a €100 million release clause in his contract, which United are willing to activate.
Griezmann wants to leave
However, there are still complications.
Atleti are currently serving a two-year transfer ban, which they have already served one year of.
Why Thursday is a big day for United and Griezmann
And, on Thursday, they will discover whether the result of their appeal as they aim to half their ban. If their appeal is granted, they will be able to strengthen their squad this summer. Real Madrid were successful in their own appeal and there is belief that Atleti will also get a reprieve.
But what does that mean for United?
Well, it means that Diego Simeone will be more willing to accept Griezmann’s departure if he knows he can replace him immediately.
And that player in question could be Chelsea’s Diego Costa - who admitted that the only club he’d be willing to join in the coming months would be his former club.
So, United will no doubt be praying that Atletico have their transfer ban halved on Thursday, meaning signing Griezmann will become a whole lot easier.
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