Manchester United will now have to move onto other transfer targets, with Antoine Griezmann all set to stay at Atletico Madrid for another season at the very least. The 26-year-old, who finished third in the Ballon d’Or voting behind Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi, has been linked with a move to Old Trafford.
However, after Atletico Madrid were hit with a transfer ban, meaning they cannot sign players until 2018, it seems to have scuppered United’s chances at signing one of the best players in the world.
The latest report comes from COPE reporter, Antonio Ruiz. He is claiming that Griezmann contacted United, and told them that he will be staying in Spain because of the transfer ban – presumably because he doesn’t want to leave them right in a predicament where they would be unable to replace him.
Contado en @partidazocope Griezmann habló hoy con el United para explicarle que tras la decisión del TAS no puede dejar tirado al Atleti.
— Antonio Ruiz (@RuizAntonito) June 1, 2017
If this is genuinely the real reason as to why Griezmann has decided to stay with his current club, then I have 100% respect for him. In this modern day age, you don’t see loyalty like this happen all that often – and he deserves credit, rather than being criticised.
Atleti have given Griezmann a real platform to perform at the highest level possible over the last few years, and although it must have been hard for him to say no to Manchester United, I do understand why.
I guess that there is always the possibility of this deal happening in the future, but that is just football. Who knows, Mourinho may now secure other targets who play in the same position, but that is a gamble that all parties seemingly are willing to take.