Barcelona have forked over €15 million to Atletico Madrid for the right to have “first refusal” on a few of Atletico’s players. Both clubs have made it clear that of course, WINK WINK, this has nothing to do with the Antoine Griezmann deal and Atletico’s unhappiness with the way things went down.
The players included in the deal, if we can call it that, are Saul Niguez, Jose Gimenez and three other academy players. The deal, according to ESPN, says that if Atletico get an offer for any of the players that are mentioned in the above deal, they have to make sure Barcelona know about it and give them the chance to match.
This deal is frankly a bit strange. It just feels like Atletico were really mad about Barcelona being fined only €300 last month and wanted to get some more meat on the bone. This was a nice, totally legal, way of Barcelona and Atletico Madrid exchanging money for some transfer rights. Now, perhaps the Griezmann deal can be left behind for good.