Antoine Griezmann is not a Barcelona player yet. And his arrival will not be simple - when he announced he was leaving Atletico it wasn’t a wink to Barca, it was a signal that he was putting himself on the market.
The strategy is, exactly, what Barcelona did not want. They are not sure if the Frenchman will join them when his release clause drops to 120 million euros from 200 on July 1.
Last year Griezmann mugged off Barca, rejecting them and making a documentary about it at the same time.
This time the player’s people started the idea of him joining Barca after Atletico’s silverware hopes crumbled.
Barca had not planned to go back for Griezmann but when his people got in touch, they opened a book that had been closed.
With Dembele’s injury and Luis Suarez’s age, the idea seems more tempting.
Nobody told Barca about Griezmann’s video coming out this week - there is no synchronisation between both sides.
Barca have always been clear with Griezmann - take a quick decision. If he wants to wear Blaugrana, let him say it. And accept the deal that was agreed in June last year, less than what Atletico eventually offered him.
Secondly, don’t get involved in a chase or auction, because if he does, Barca will pull out immediately.
PSG, Bayern and Man City are now interested after Griezmann’s video and Barca aren’t up for competing.
Barca hope in the next few days that Griezmann will take a stop forward - as so many players have when they put sporting success above the economic question.
Anyone taking Griezmann to Barcelona as a done deal is mistaken. There’s a long way to go.