According to a report from The Athletic (h/t Barça Universal), Manchester United had enquired about the possibility of signing Antoine Griezmann during the summer transfer window.
The Frenchman is currently plying his trade for Atletico Madrid, having joined the club in 2021 on a two-year loan deal. But his contract at the Civitas Metropolitano has become a point of contention between Atleti and Barcelona, who have both drawn themselves into a legal battle over a specific clause.
The special clause allows Barcelona to offload Griezmann for €40 million at the end of the season if the attacker features in over 50% of the available matches. However, with matches only being counted if the player plays for more than 45 minutes, Atletico have opted to feature him only after 30 minutes in games this season.
It has led to frustration within Griezmann, and there are suggestions that the attacker could look to leave Atletico Madrid after the turn of the year.
Manchester United were among the clubs interested in his services in the summer. The Premier League giants had been looking for a reliable forward to replace Cristiano Ronaldo at the time and made enquiries for Griezmann.
However, the 31-year-old was focused on continuing at Atletico at the time and did not entertain any offers.
Meanwhile, with Ronaldo international remaining at Old Trafford, they did not opt to sign anyone. However, with Griezmann facing a difficult situation at Atletico Madrid, it will not come as a surprise to see Manchester United emerging as a suitor for the Frenchman.
Despite his lack of game-time at the Metropolitano, Griezmann remains rather calm about his national team situation, knowing his place in the French squad is virtually guaranteed despite the return to form of some of the other attacking players, including Ousmane Dembele.
And while he did start his first game of the season on Sunday night, if the situation regarding his playing time does not improve, a parting of ways as early as January cannot be ruled out.
Atletico Madrid will try to sign Arsenal, Liverpool target for free in the summer
Atletico Madrid saw a lot of movement during the January transfer window as they saw several players leave, while also bringing in a couple of new faces in.
But one player who they tried to sign and could not is Borussia Monchengladbach forward Marcus Thuram.
Indeed, according to AS, was on the top of director Andrea Berta’s list for the winter window as he is in the final six months of his contract. But, Gladbach asked for a fee of around €10-12 million to offload him, which prompted Atletico Madrid to move for Depay instead.
But the report states that Thuram continues to be on the agenda at the Civitas Metropolitano and Berta will try to sign him again in the summer transfer window.
However, there will be intense competition for the 25-year-old’s services given that he will be available for a free transfer at the end of the season.
Juventus and Inter Milan have shown an interest in Thuram, but there are a lot of clubs in England wishing to sign him up.
Indeed, Arsenal, Liverpool and Tottenham Hotspur are all said to be gunning for the French forward’s signing while more clubs could join the list of his suitors as days progress.
So, it will be important for Atletico Madrid to achieve a top-four finish in La Liga and qualify for the UEFA Champions League for next season if they wish to attract a player of Thuram’s capability and calibre.
The 25-year-old has netted 13 goals and set up four more in 19 matches across all competitions. His ability to play anywhere across the frontline makes him an attractive prospect for interested parties such as Atletico.
But given the intense competition, Diego Simeone & co. will need to act swiftly if they wish to sign Thuram.