October 09, 2017
LIONEL MESSI gave Barcelona the green light to make a move for Antoine Griezmann over the summer, it has been claimed.



Barcelona endured a rocky summer, losing Neymar to Paris Saint-Germain on the back of a season where fierce rivals Real Madrid had reigned supreme domestically and in Europe.
Their attempts to land a replacement were made difficult by the hard stances of both Borussia Dortmund and Liverpool surrounding Ousmane Dembele and Philippe Coutinho.
Barcelona eventually signed Dembele for a huge £96million, while they were unable to convince Liverpool into letting Coutinho move to the Nou Camp.
And Spanish website Don Balon say Lionel Messi wanted the club to sign Griezmann from Atletico Madrid.

Barcelona News: Lionel Messi gave blessing for Antoine Griezmann to replace Neymar

The France international was widely expected to leave Spain last summer.
Manchester United appeared in pole position to secure his signature, with Paul Pogba dropping numerous hints a transfer deal was in the offing.
However, Atletico’s transfer ban ultimately saw the Red Devils lose out.
And Don Balon say that, despite Messi’s blessing, it was a similar case with Barcelona.

Barcelona News: Lionel Messi gave blessing for Antoine Griezmann to replace Neymar

They were unwilling to pay the player’s £184m release clause, after Griezmann penned a contract extension.
However, with Atletico’s ban ending in January, he can now be bought for £92m.
Messi reportedly feels he can help Barcelona regain their swagger following Neymar’s exit.
And Kylian Mbappe, who plays alongside Griezmann for France and Neymar for PSG, thinks his compatriot is actually more clinical than the Brazilian.

Barcelona News: Lionel Messi gave blessing for Antoine Griezmann to replace Neymar

“Both of them, because they are two different players,” he said.
“Neymar is more creative and Griezmann is more clinical in front of goal.
“So they are two different players and I can learn from both of them every day.”
Griezmann can show his worth to Barcelona when Atletico face the Catalan giants at the weekend (7.45pm).
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