There was transfers galore on deadline day. nd Barcelona proved among the more active clubs on the market in the final hours of the window. Yet the deals pulled through were not short of controversy, especially when it comes to the departure of Antoine Griezmann. With just two seasons under his belt as an azulgrana, the Frenchman has returned to Atlético Madrid on a loan with an obligation to buy for 40 million.
Tough time in Barcelona
From the very start, the success of Griezmann’s Barça career was in doubt due to various factors. He came in by a ludicrously incompetent board that never showed any faith in him. To make matters worse, Ernesto Valverde didn’t even need him in his structureless and chaotic side. It wasn’t the sort of reinforcement that Barcelona needed. So from the very start, the odds were against Antoine.
Yet that didn’t stop him from working hard to integrate himself into the squad. His ambiguous role meant that Griezmann would often find himself in and out of the team. Especially in his first season. But as time progressed, the Frenchman hit his stride and proved an essential asset for Ronald Koeman. Numerous were the occasions where Antoine dragged us out of trouble, even though those performances were often overshadowed by some anonymous ones. Notwithstanding, there’s no denying that he was a crucial player for Barça.
Going back to Atletico
As for the deal itself, there’s plenty of questions to ask. If the reasons behind his sale purely represent an attempt to save Barcelona from a financial calamity, then relieving the club of his humongous salary is definitely an understandable choice. Nevertheless, handing our direct rivals one of our attacking leaders for the second year running is not something to make a habit of.
In terms of general quality, the sale of Antoine Griezmann is a huge blow for Barça. Especially considering the deal was completed so late that no proper replacement could be found. But at the very least, it’s a sizeable financial boost.
Merci pour tout, Antoine.