Atletico Madrid are reportedly looking to offload Antoine Griezmann as part of an ambitious plan to potentially recruit Cristiano Ronaldo.
It’s known that CR7 has asked to leave Manchester United following a disappointing sixth place finish in the Premier League last season.
Ronaldo is understood to be desperate to keep playing at the highest level for the remaining years of his celebrated career.
He intends to play Champions League football this coming season, which the Red Devils will not be doing.
The 37-year-old is yet to return to United following his summer break and has been left out of the squad for their pre-season tour, citing personal reasons.
After it was revealed that he’s asked United to let him go, Ronaldo has been linked with a series of elite clubs.
However, the likes of Real Madrid, Paris Saint-Germain, Bayern Munich and even Barcelona are said to have turned down approaches from agent Jorde Mendes to sign him.
Now, according to the Times, Atletico Madrid have stepped forward as potential suitors for CR7.
It’s claimed that Atleti are set to make an attempt to bring Ronado back to Madrid, but with the rivals of the club he built a legacy with.
In a somewhat surprising turn of events, he is said to be “receptive” to the idea.
To make it happen, they would have to make space on their wage bill, with Griezmann the man who would be offloaded.
PSG are reported to have been offered the Frenchman last week, but do not have an interest in recruiting him.
Ronaldo is currently at home in Lisbon and said to be ‘awaiting instruction’ from his agent.
However, new United boss Erik Ten Hag is keeping cool over the situation – focusing on the squad he has at his disposal at present – and has made it clear the club’s ‘not for sale’ stance has not changed.
Ahead of their next pre-season friendly against Aston Villa in Australia, Ten Hag was asked for an update on Ronaldo’s situation, and the Dutchman replied: “No [update].
“It’s the same as last week.”
Asked whether he was concerned that the longer Ronaldo stays away the less time he would have to be fit for the new campaign, the United boss said: “Of course. But concerning is maybe not the right word.
“I focus on the players who are there and they are doing really well. They are in good shape and I will further focus on that and develop that.
“I cannot wait for him coming in, then we will integrate him.”
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