Josep Bartomeu, former president of FC Barcelona, assumes to have recruited Antoine Griezmann whose style of play was made for the Catalan club, according to him. He defends himself against the criticisms accompanying the realization of this transfer.
Hardly a day goes by without an interview with a former or current leader of FC Barcelona in the Spanish press. This Friday, Josep Bartomeu, former president of the club pushed to resign in October 2020, confides in Mundo Deportivo. He defends himself in particular on the case of Antoine Griezmann, recruited in 2019. For him, the Frenchman’s style corresponded to that of Barça and met the expectations of the technical staff.
« His way of playing matches that of Barça »
« When Valverde (coach from 2017 to 2020, editor’s note) arrived, the technicians followed him very closely and wanted him to come, explains Bartomeu. He is a world star with a way of playing that corresponds to that Barça, in a 4-3-3, and he could come. There was a period of ups and downs but you have to see the balance. He scored goals, delivered a lot of assists and that given higher quality. He came back to Atlético (last summer) and we expected more because he is young and as some veterans have retired he would have taken on more responsibility and importance. «
He also promises that the club had the means to recruit him despite recent accusations by Ferran Reverter, the club’s general manager, claiming otherwise. “Planning has always existed, especially with him,” he explains. “It had worked for a long time and if the transfer was paid, it was because there was money. ‘deferred payment agreement, as is done with many clubs, but a direct payment of the clause. If it was paid, then the money was there. «
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He admits to having taken out a loan for this but does not remember the exact moment. For Reverter, the request was made only the day before the transfer. « I don’t know if it was a day or two or three before, but we tried to sign as late as possible to pay less interest, but I don’t think it was the same day or the day before, surely. days before. «