Barcelona Transfer News: Ernesto Valverde Comments on Antoine Griezmann Rumours

Gill Clark@@gillclarkyFeatured Columnist INovember 17, 2017

Atletico Madrid's French forward Antoine Griezmann shoots a free kick during the UEFA Champions League football match Club Atletico de Madrid vs Qarabag FK at the Wanda Metropolitano stadium in Madrid on October 31, 2017. / AFP PHOTO / JAVIER SORIANO        (Photo credit should read JAVIER SORIANO/AFP/Getty Images)
JAVIER SORIANO/Getty Images

Ernesto Valverde has commented on speculation Barcelona will try to sign Antoine Griezmann by saying he is a "great player" and that the club will "not close the door on anything."

The Catalan giants have already agreed a deal in principle to sign the France international next summer, per Le 10 Sport (h/t Sport).

Griezmann has a release clause of €100 million, and Barcelona will try to complete a deal with Atletico "in the coming months."

Opta highlight just how effective Griezmann has been in La Liga:

Valverde has now spoken about the Atletico Madrid striker and refused to rule out a move for the 26-year-old, per Sam Marsden at ESPN FC:

"Griezmann is a great player, one of the names being talked about but for now I have the players that I have. In the future, we will see. Of course, the club, like all clubs, is open to doing business in the January window, even though we're happy with what we already have. We're not going to close the door on anything."

The Frenchman was linked with a move to Manchester United last summer but confirmed he would stay at the club due to their transfer ban, per Telefoot (h/t Callum Davis at the Telegraph).

It is, perhaps, little surprise to see Griezmann's future again the subject of speculation, and his reported release clause makes him a relatively affordable and attractive option.

Griezmann has a proven goalscoring record not only in La Liga, but also in the Champions League, per WhoScored.com:

While his quality is not in doubt, one question mark over a possible move to Barcelona would be where he would fit into Valverde's side.

Although Griezmann is a flexible player who can operate centrally or out wide, Barca are well covered with Lionel Messi, Ousmane Dembele and Luis Suarez.

However, the opportunity to bring in a talent such as Griezmann at a relatively reasonable price is bound to appeal, and he would bring youth to an ageing attack, with Messi and Suarez both set to turn 31 next year.