Three-way transfer saga hots up as Liverpool leave €40m bid on the table and are offered €63m attacker

With Liverpool’s offer to Atletico Madrid still on the table, Saul Niguez could still move to Anfield while Antoine Griezmann has been offered to the Reds by his sister/agent.

Strap in because this is a confusing transfer story and one that won’t have a straightforward conclusion by any means necessary.

First off, Spanish journalist Matteo Moretto says that the ‘barter’ between Atleti and Barcelona ‘cools down’ and while this doesn’t mean that it’s over, it’s taking too long to reach an agreement.

SEVILLE, SPAIN - JANUARY 17: Antoine Griezmann of FC Barcelona looks on during the Supercopa de Espana Final match between FC Barcelona and Athletic Club at Estadio de La Cartuja on January 17, 2021 in Seville, Spain.
SEVILLE, SPAIN – JANUARY 17: Antoine Griezmann of FC Barcelona looks on during the Supercopa de Espana Final match between FC Barcelona and Athletic Club at Estadio de La Cartuja on January 17, 2021 in Seville, Spain. (Photo by David Ramos/Getty Images)

He, very interestingly, adds: “The Atlético de Madrid player continues to have two Premier clubs very attentive to him.”

As Anfield Central reported on Wednesday, the two Premier League clubs interested are Liverpool and Chelsea.

The Reds have already made a €40m plus add-ons bid for Saul and it’s still on the table, with the hope being that talks break down between Barcelona and Atletico.

This was initially rejected by Atletico as they want €50m all cash but Liverpool have left their offer on the table in the event that the plug is pulled on an arrangement with Barcelona.

MADRID, SPAIN - OCTOBER 26: Saul Niguez of Atletico Madrid Celebrates 1-0 during the La Liga Santander match between Atletico Madrid v Athletic de Bilbao at the Estadio Wanda Metropolitano on October 26, 2019 in Madrid Spain.
MADRID, SPAIN – OCTOBER 26: Saul Niguez of Atletico Madrid Celebrates 1-0 during the La Liga Santander match between Atletico Madrid v Athletic de Bilbao at the Estadio Wanda Metropolitano on October 26, 2019 in Madrid Spain. (Photo by David S. Bustamante/Soccrates/Getty Images)

Empire of the Kop reported on Friday as news broke that negotiations weren’t going swimmingly between Atleti and Barcelona that Liverpool remain keen on Saul.

Meanwhile, the player’s agent, Joshua Barnett told AS that ‘nothing has been decided yet’ as the 26-year-old takes his time plotting his next career move.

The only thing that seems definite is that Saul will not be an Atletico Madrid player come the end of the summer – his desire to leave has been made too public for things to go back to normal.

The same can be said of Antoine Griezmann, who I imagine will feel hurt and unwanted by Barcelona as they cast look set to cast him aside to re-sign Leo Messi.

BARCELONA, SPAIN - SEPTEMBER 24: Antoine Griezmann and Lionel Messi of FC Barcelona celebrating their team's first goal during the Liga match between FC Barcelona and Villarreal CF at Camp Nou on September 24, 2019 in Barcelona, Spain.
BARCELONA, SPAIN – SEPTEMBER 24: Antoine Griezmann and Lionel Messi of FC Barcelona celebrating their team’s first goal during the Liga match between FC Barcelona and Villarreal CF at Camp Nou on September 24, 2019 in Barcelona, Spain. (Photo by Quality Sport Images/Getty Images)

According to 90Min, the French forward’s agent and sister, Maud, has offered him to ‘a handful of Premier League sides but Atletico Madrid remain well ahead in the race for his signature.’

Liverpool are said to be one of the sides offered the chance to sign Griezmann while Chelsea and Man City have also been contacted.

It’s easy to understand why nobody is taking up the call to sign the former Real Sociedad attacker as he is already 30 and is reportedly earning wages in the region of £594,000 per week.

Barcelona signed him for £107million just two years ago but are now ready to take a massive loss to sell him to free up space on their wage bill to be able to afford Messi’s salary.

Barcelona's Argentine forward Lionel Messi (L) celebrates with Barcelona's French forward Antoine Griezmann after scoring during the Spanish league football match FC Barcelona against SD Eibar at the Camp Nou stadium in Barcelona on February 22, 2020.
Barcelona’s Argentine forward Lionel Messi (L) celebrates with Barcelona’s French forward Antoine Griezmann after scoring during the Spanish league football match FC Barcelona against SD Eibar at the Camp Nou stadium in Barcelona on February 22, 2020. (Photo by JOSEP LAGO/AFP via Getty Images)

Transfermarkt values him at €63m (£54m) but he’d have to cost significantly less for Liverpool to even begin the process of considering signing him.

That said, Griezmann and Saul would solve two of the Reds’ biggest squad needs.

Liverpool are searching for a new midfielder and attacker.

Saul seems like he’d be a good fit for the Reds but it is unclear whether or not Griezmann would make the cut in the Premier League.

BARCELONA, SPAIN - AUGUST 04: Antoine Griezmann of FC Barcelona waves to the crowd prior to the Joan Gamper trophy friendly match at Nou Camp between FC Barcelona and Arsenal on August 04, 2019 in Barcelona, Spain.
BARCELONA, SPAIN – AUGUST 04: Antoine Griezmann of FC Barcelona waves to the crowd prior to the Joan Gamper trophy friendly match at Nou Camp between FC Barcelona and Arsenal on August 04, 2019 in Barcelona, Spain. (Photo by David Ramos/Getty Images)

At 30, he’s on the decline but he did enjoy a fruitful 2020/21 season with Barcelona before he went to the EUROs with France, scoring 20 goals and assisting 13.

With Liverpool looking to rejuvenate their squad and not bog it down with another ageing forward, I would be very surprised if the Reds signed Griezmann this summer.

Michael Mongie
Football Central Media Group founder, owner and editor.

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