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Barcelona In Talks With Atletico Madrid Over Huge Swap Deal

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Barcelona In Talks With Atletico Madrid Over Huge Swap Deal

Barcelona could be involved in the biggest surprise of Transfer Deadline Day, after they opened talks with Atletico Madrid over a potential swap deal.

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It's been a stranger summer of incomings and outgoings at Barcelona this year, with Lionel Messi's departure obviously the headline act.

Before the club's all time top scorer left for PSG, it was reported that Griezmann might have been forced to leave the Nou Camp, with Memphis Depay and Sergio Aguero's arrivals meaning less game time.

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A swap back to Atleti was mooted, with Saul Niguez set to go the other way in the potential move, as Barca hoped to recoup some money, as well as the Frenchman's wages.

Whilst that deal has been dead for sometime, Griezmann could still return to Atleti for a reunion with Diego Simeone, after the two teams started negotiations with just hours left of Tuesday's deadline.

According to ESPN, the two clubs have been discussing a swap deal that would see Joao Felix move to Barcelona and Griezmann head back to the Spanish capital, where he really made his name.

Griezmann and Simeone could soon be working together again. Image: PA Images
Griezmann and Simeone could soon be working together again. Image: PA Images
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The report claims that on Monday, the Catalan giants had sent a loan offer to the reigning La Liga champions for Felix to join them on loan.

That offer was rejected completely out of hand but Ronald Koeman's side have returned with an offer that would be far more enticing, with sources close to Griezmann saying the move is 'not impossible.'

Both the loan move and the swap make sense for Barca, who have spent much of this summer trying to cut down on their costs, seeing as Messi had to leave because they weren't able to afford him.

Griezmann's time at Atleti saw him score 133 goals in 257 appearances, in five seasons under Simeone, before the 30-year-old moved to the Nou Camp in 2019.

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A year before he'd been linked with a move to Manchester United but it fell through late on, due to his club's transfer embargo meaning he couldn't be replaced.

Felix and Griezmann could swap on Tuesday. Image: PA Images
Felix and Griezmann could swap on Tuesday. Image: PA Images

When he eventually left, his place was taken by Felix, with Atleti spending €126 million for the then 19-year-old, who'd played just one full season for Benfica's first team.

With Barcelona set to sell Emerson Royal for around £30 million on Tuesday, having only spent £9 million to sign him earlier this summer, and Ilaix Moriba joining RB Leipzig for £20 million, there is some money for Ronald Koeman to play with.

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The manager was also accused at the weekend of trying to force Samuel Umtiti out of the club by getting him booed by fans for warming up.

Featured Image Credit: PA

Topics: Transfers, Football, La Liga, Barcelona, Atletico Madrid, Joao Felix, Antoine Griezmann

Ryan Sidle
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