Antoine Griezmann has informed Atletico Madrid that he will leave this summer, with sources confirming to ESPN FC that Barcelona are hopeful of signing him less than one year after he turned them down.
Atletico released a short statement Tuesday revealing that Griezmann had communicated his decision to leave the club after five seasons. They followed that up by posting a video of the French forward on social media explaining his decision to supporters.
“After speaking with (coach Diego Simeone), (CEO Miguel) Angel Gil Marin and with people in the club’s hierarchy, I wanted to speak with you, the fans,” Griezmann said. “You have always shown me a lot of love and I wanted to be the first to tell you that I’ve taken the decision to leave to see other things and take on other challenges.
“It’s been a difficult route to take, but it’s what I feel I need. Thanks for everything during five fantastic years here, where I was able to win my first big trophies. There have been some incredible moments that I will always remember. You, the supporters, will always be in my heart.”
ESPN FC first reported in March that Griezmann, 28, wanted to leave Atletico at the end of the season. He had been offered to a number of Europe’s biggest clubs, including Barca, although the Catalans weren’t initially interested in reopening talks to sign him after he turned them down after last summer’s events.
The 2018 World Cup winner with France has played his entire professional career in Spain, having arrived to Atletico from Real Sociedad in 2014. Another club with interest in Griezmann is Ligue 1 champions Paris Saint-Germain.