Lionel Messi has reportedly urged Barcelona to avoid signing Antoine Griezmann as he would prefer to see Neymar return to the club.
Although they successfully defended their La Liga crown this past season, the Catalan giants can consider it a disappointing campaign given the manner of their Champions League exit and failure in the Copa del Rey.
In turn, changes to the squad are perhaps to be expected this summer to ensure that they continue to improve, with reports that Messi has a clear idea of who could bolster their attack.
As per RMC Sport, it’s suggested that the Barcelona icon has asked the club to focus on Neymar instead of Griezmann, although it’s added that it will remain a difficult task given Paris Saint-Germain have no interest in selling the Brazilian superstar.
With that in mind, it seems like they will fight a losing battle if they opt to change their priorities, and so time will tell if they do indeed go for Griezmann who has already officially communicated his desire to leave Atletico Madrid this summer.
As noted by Goal Italy, the Frenchman has a release clause in his contract which will fall to €120m on July 1 onwards, arguably making him an affordable and value-for-money purchase.
Having bagged 21 goals and 10 assists in 48 appearances last season, he showed once again his quality in the final third, and so it’s fair to say that he would improve any squad that he’s part of moving forward.
Despite Messi’s apparent desire to secure a reunion with Neymar, he may well have to settle for linking up with Griezmann next season, as a successful raid for the former sounds unlikely at this stage.
It’s easy to understand why he would want his former teammate back though, as they linked up to form a deadly trident along with Luis Suarez as they enjoyed a trophy-laden spell together at the Nou Camp previously.