Manchester United are being linked with signing Antoine Griezmann. Yet again.
The Independent claim United have been in touch over a move for the 28-year-old. He has announced his desire to quit Atletico Madrid this summer, hoping a club will pay his £108 million release clause.
No, we aren’t buying it either. There are a couple of explanations for United’s reported interest.
United’s name is quite probably being used by Griezmann’s representatives to stir up interest and put pressure on Barcelona to do a deal.
But let’s give United some credit for a moment… what if this is part of a masterplan to sign Matthijs De Ligt?
Barcelona are viewed as frontrunners for both Griezmann and De Ligt. But how much money do they really have to spend?
They have already bought Frenkie de Jong for £65 million. Can they afford to buy Griezmann for £108 million and De Ligt for £75 million?
United have to hope that they can’t. And the best way forward is to push them into sealing a deal for Griezmann quickly.
Let’s say United are fabricating interest in Griezmann, to make Barcelona rush into a move. That makes the Red Devils’ task to sign De Ligt a lot easier.
Catalan newspaper Sport already claim United can offer better wages than Barcelona. It will be even easier to outmuscle them once they have landed Griezmann and spent most of their transfer budget.
We are almost certainly giving Ed Woodward too much credit here.
This is the same man who enquired after Julian Brandt after he had already agreed to sign for Dortmund. But what if he has got this one right? We can only hope.