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  • Graham HunterSpain author

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      Graham Hunter is a Barcelona-based freelance writer for ESPN.com who specializes in La Liga and the Spanish national team.

Antoine Griezmann may have lots of suitors now he is declared his death from Atletico Madrid the summer: Manchester United tried hard to sign him in 2017 however want him now more than everwhile he’d reevaluate the trophy opportunities of PSG, Juventus, Bayern Munich and Real Madrid without any query.

even when you are cynical about a guy who pulled out the”is he or isn’t he?” Saga for a lifetime a year ago before using the daft “The Conclusion” movie to announce he wasn’t going anywhere, you need to understand why there is going to be a queue of the world’s top clubs now the French World Cup winner is available on the marketplace.

However, it could be a major surprise when his final destination was not Barcelona.

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While Bayern require a short-term attack spouse and long term replacement for Robert Lewandowski, and United’s lost faith in Alexis Sanchez has them looking for fresh blood, it is tough to understand why they are Griezmann’s first choice. Ditto Juve who, regardless of their dominance of Serie A, do not seem designed to win on the Champions League and could be about to go into a summer of upheaval whether coach Massimiliano Allegri stays or departs.

The likes of Arsenal, Chelsea, Inter and PSG could definitely present their requirement for its amazing, hard working, challenging Frenchman who, before he declared his departure, was loved at Atleti. However, Barcelona provide a particular bundle\.

In the event the Catalans are eager to deposit his or her 130m buyout plan on July 1 and convince Griezmann to deny other supplies, subsequently Messi is gem from the crown.

To perform next to arguably the best footballer of all time, to know from himpersonally, to benefit from his largesse and to accompany him onto the podium to raise trophy after trophy — well that’s a valid fantasy for any elite footballer, not just a man like Griezmann.

Luis Suarez has been Messi’s best-ever attack partner for a number of factors. His hunger, complete commitment to winning relentlessly, additional goal power, and centre forward play that complements the Argentinian’s need to flit round the spaces that emerge when a No. 9 is on the ball.

Suarez is an extremely instinctive, real and generous”amigo” for Messi to play , but at 32 he isn’t getting any younger and his record of failing to score away from home in the Champions League to get three-and-a-half years isn’t just atrocious it’s an indication that things won’t ever get better again on this front.

I’d say it’s a good bet that Suarez is away to David Beckham’s Inter Miami FC job in a year at the most recent. He is not likely to be offered a contract along with the supreme form we’ve witnessed this year doesn’t imply that there is not space for someone to challenge, and eventually replace, ” he\.

Really, the way in which Griezmann happily feeds Diego Costa, Alvaro Morata, or even his French global team partners, suggests that there is a possible dovetail with Messi. Others have tried and succeeded, or failed, to comparative degrees — but the proof is that a Messi-Griezmann axis can be hypothetically, perfect\.

However, for his”Decision” they might have been enjoying together this season . Last summer it was a gigantic tide of emotion and loyalty into to Diego Simeone, which made him flip down what seemed to Camp Nou, and also his then-home, Atleti, the Metroplitano, his excellent friend Diego Godin.

Barcelona was whispering sweet nothings in the base Griezmann’s representative, his sister, and it wasn’t until Atleti surged to their own Europa League success, till Godin cautioned him to be patient instead of rash, also until the rabidly enthusiastic Atleti supporters gave him a taste of the potential ire if he should proceed, did the striker leave his plans to move north.

However, the nectar of Barcelona’s entreaties stayed with him. Atleti may have ended second in La Liga this year but their embarrassment in Turin against Juve, being knocked out of the Copa del Rey by (currently ) relegated Girona and the clear signs that Los Colchoneros are in decline or a period of enormous renovation — or both were chastening facts for its rough Frenchman to chew on.

The fact that Godin is departing this summer, for Serie A and Inter Milan, isn’t a coincidence. He had been Griezmann’s mentor and his impending absence removed an anchor, something to tie the principal striker to a club at the moment, honestly, it is just as feasible to suggest that they go a couple of trophyless seasons since it’s that Simeone and Mono Burgos set things right with a large summer in the transfer market and a spin of the coaching magic from July onwards.

Having tasted World Cup glory past summer, having won the Europa League and never watched Barcelona perform their”close but no cigar” act at the Champions League again, I’d imagine that if Griezmann isn’t yet fully committed to the Blaugrana afterward (a) he must be soon and (b) if they miss him then heads will roll in the Camp Nou offices.

Barcelona have jumped through hoops for a player before, obviously. In summertime 2006 they’d spent the best aspect of a year convincing Thierry Henry, Arsenal and the French World Cup winner representatives that he should go to Camp Nou. However, the way in which his then-team, Arsenal, dropped the 2006 Champions League final to Barca meant that Henry, in his fury, ripped off the tentative thing.

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A year after, he altered his mind. Henry took a season to acclimatise , came from the Premier League and, together with the advent of Pep Guardiola as first team coach, played a role in Barcelona winning their first Treble — culminating in a Champions League final success\.

Henry was 29 if he made the movement, Griezmann is 28 now and it has to be a enormous portion of Barcelona’s calculations which the Frenchman is not only the perfect age, has got the perfect mindset and the appropriate abilities — he’s a man who’s hungry for larger prizes and performs in a way which may fit with Messi. They’d certainly forgive the embarassment of last summer when the Champions League has been returned to Camp Nou once again next season\.

As for Atleti — it’s adios, I believe , not”see you later.” The club’s fans don’t take it nicely where heroes depart in any other fashion than Godin just failed — retired after honourable duty, moving into a different country and walking out the exit door with the feeling that there is nowhere more special to them compared to Majadahonda training ground or the Metropolitano scene.

Griezmann ending up at Barca could only be trumped if he crossed the city, as Hugo Sanchez formerly did, also signed for Real Madrid. But I do not think he’d do that. Real could be on the list of suitors, however, a transfer to Barcelona seems like a match made in heaven.

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