Griezmann not on table for Barca as Bartomeu refuses to rule out De Ligt

By Sports Desk April 15, 2019

Barcelona president Josep Maria Bartomeu insisted Atletico Madrid star Antoine Griezmann is not in the club's plans, though he refused to rule out a move for Ajax captain Matthijs de Ligt.

Griezmann was linked with Barca prior to the 2018 World Cup before committing his future to Atletico, however, speculation of a Camp Nou switch has resurfaced.

However, LaLiga champions Barca are not looking to sign the 28-year-old – who is contracted until 2023 – according to Bartomeu.

"[Griezmann] is an Atletico Madrid player and he has a contract [with them]," the Barcelona president told TVE.

"I like that the great players are in Spain because he gives value to LaLiga Santander [which helps], for example, to get sponsors.

"If Griezmann wanted to come, he would have to talk to the coaches, but his name is not on the table.

"There is a lot of speculation in the press, but Griezmann is not on the table and he has not called Barcelona."

One player on Barca's radar is Ajax and Netherlands centre-back De Ligt, who continues to attract interest from Europe's biggest clubs.

Barca have already agreed to sign Ajax star Frenkie de Jong – who will join next season – and Bartomeu's club are reportedly ready to raid the Dutch giants again for De Ligt.

"The signing of De Jong we wanted to do in the summer, but there was a lot of pressure, other teams wanted him and we advanced it," Bartomeu said.

"With Ajax there is a very good relationship. With De Ligt, I do not know what will happen. It seems he will be on the market and when we talk to the coaches we will see if we're in for him or not.

"His way of playing fits us and I like it. Ajax are a training club that sells, but we have not had talks."

Related items

  • Leroy Sane: No contact with Bayern Munich, says Pep Guardiola Leroy Sane: No contact with Bayern Munich, says Pep Guardiola

    Pep Guardiola remains hopeful winger Leroy Sane will stay at Manchester City and claims he has not spoken to anyone at Bayern Munich regarding the Germany international.

    Bayern are on the lookout for wide players to fill the sizeable void left by Franck Ribery and Arjen Robben with Sane top of their wishlist.

    Chairman Karl-Heinz Rummenigge and coach Niko Kovac have been vocal in their admiration of the 23-year-old with the former even suggesting the Bundesliga champions are "ready" to make a move should the player express a wish to leave the Etihad Stadium.

    Guardiola, speaking ahead of the Asia Trophy clash with Wolves, hinted at dissatisfaction with his former club's public pursuit and outlined his desire to keep Sane in the Premier League.

    He told reporters in Shanghai: "For a long time they talk about their interest, but Leroy is our player and hopefully he can stay next season and next season and next season."

    Pushed on if he had spoken to anyone at Bayern, Guardiola replied: "No."

    City have been relatively quiet in the transfer window so far, with the signing of defensive midfielder Rodri from Atletico Madrid their only major acquisition.

    Guardiola said: "We are so happy with the squad we have. I don't know if the players here will stay or if new players will come. But I am delighted with the players we have."

    City have been linked with Leicester City's Harry Maguire although it seems Manchester United now lead the race for the England international. Guardiola suggested central defence was an area he was considering strengthening but had options in his squad should a move not materialise.

    "There's a chance [of a defender coming in] but I don't know if it will be possible. We [already] have three incredible central defenders and Fernandinho can play in that position," he said.

  • Rondon reunites with Benitez at Dalian Yifang Rondon reunites with Benitez at Dalian Yifang

    Salomon Rondon has linked back up with former Newcastle United boss Rafael Benitez after leaving West Brom for Dalian Yifang.

    Venezuela striker Rondon joins the Chinese Super League side for an undisclosed fee.

    The 29-year-old played under Benitez on loan at Newcastle last season, scoring 12 goals in all competitions.

    He previously netted 24 times across three Premier League seasons for West Brom following his arrival from Russian outfit Zenit for a reported £12million in 2015.

    The Baggies were relegated to the Championship three years later and Rondon has now left the Hawthorns on a permanent basis.

    His new team-mates at Dalian include Yannick Carrasco and Marek Hamsik. 

  • Rumour Has It: Juventus to offer three players in move for Pogba Rumour Has It: Juventus to offer three players in move for Pogba

    Maybe Juventus are not ready to give up on signing Manchester United star Paul Pogba just yet.

    Pogba, 26, has been linked with a return to Turin and a move to Real Madrid as he looks for an Old Trafford exit.

    But, just as it looked like Juve were struggling and Madrid was the midfielder's most likely destination, that may have changed.

     

    TOP STORY – JUVE TO OFFER THREE PLAYERS IN MOVE FOR POGBA

    Juventus could offer a fee plus three players in their move for Manchester United star Pogba, according to Corriere dello Sport.

    Full-back Joao Cancelo, attacker Douglas Costa and midfielder Blaise Matuidi are the players mentioned for potential moves in the report.

    Meanwhile, ESPN FC report Real Madrid president Florentino Perez has told coach Zinedine Zidane that it will be very difficult to sign Pogba this close season.

     

    ROUND-UP

    - Barcelona are still trying to find a way to bring Neymar back to Camp Nou from Paris Saint-Germain. According to Sky Germany, Barca are offering €100million plus two players, having given PSG a list of six that includes Philippe Coutinho, Ousmane Dembele, Ivan Rakitic, Nelson Semedo and Malcom. That is up from the earlier offer of €40m plus two players. According to Sport, Barca have made Coutinho and Rakitic priorities to be sold.

    - After being linked to Bayern Munich, Callum Hudson-Odoi is set to re-sign with Chelsea. The Daily Mail report the 18-year-old England international will sign a five-year deal worth more than £100,000 per week to stay at Stamford Bridge.

    - Giovani Lo Celso apparently wants to join Tottenham, but Spurs are unwilling to meet Real Betis' £60m (€66.8m) asking price, according to The Sun, who say Erik Lamela could be added into a deal. Danny Rose could also reportedly leave Spurs and Sky Sports say PSG are interested in the left-back.

    - Arsenal have beaten their north London rivals to the signing of Saint-Etienne defender William Saliba, according to ESPN FC. Arsenal will complete the signing of Saliba for £26.9m (€30m) and loan him back to the Ligue 1 club despite late interest from Spurs, the report says.

    - Another reported Arsenal target, Wilfried Zaha, has told Crystal Palace he wants to leave, according to The Sun. Arsenal have reportedly had a £40m bid for the attacker rejected.

    - Bayern Munich are ready to meet Celta Vigo midfielder Brais Mendez's €25m release clause, according to Kicker. Mendez, 22, was handed a Spain debut late last year and scored six goals while providing seven assists for Celta in LaLiga in 2018-19.

© 2018 SportsMaxTV All Rights Reserved.