Opinion: Griezmann sale was necessary for Barcelona but de Jong is a terrible replacement

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Transfer deadline day certainly didn’t disappoint in the end, and Barcelona were again in the thick of it, right up until the last knockings.

After allowing Lionel Messi to move on to Paris Saint-Germain, president, Joan Laporta, had another shock in store for supporters with a last-minute loan move – with obligation to buy – for Antoine Griezmann to head back to Atletico Madrid.

The Frenchman could potentially have been relied upon to get the goals in Messi’s absence, but the truth is he needed to be sold.

Barca’s financial situation is so acute that, in the absence of being able to offload the likes of Miralem Pjanic and Samuel Umtiti, something had to give.

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There will, undoubtedly, be some short term pain for the Catalans to bear, but the hope will be that long-term gain will come as a result.

Ronald Koeman with Luuk de Jong

The one mistake the president has made is by replacing Griezmann with Sevilla’s Luuk de Jong.

Since moving to La Liga in 2019/20, the striker has only managed 19 goals in 94 games for the Andalusians, per transfermarkt, and that’s not a return fit for a Barcelona striker.

Only signed on a one-year loan, the assumption has to be that Laporta has something big up his sleeve next summer.

More Stories Antoine Griezmann Joan Laporta Lionel Messi Luuk De Jong Miralem Pjanic Samuel Umtiti