Antoine Griezmann has rejoined Atlético Madrid in a shock move from Barcelona on a season’s loan with an obligation for the transfer to become permanent for €40m (£34.4m).
The France international left Atlético for Barcelona in a €120m deal in 2019 but has failed to live up to expectations. He has scored 22 goals in 74 La Liga games for the Catalan club.
A swap involving João Felix had been mooted but Barcelona instead signed Luuk de Jong from Sevilla on a season’s loan with the option of a permanent transfer. Griezmann spent five successful seasons at Atlético after joining from Real Sociedad, his goals return markedly better than at the Camp Nou, scoring 94 times in 180 league games. Atlético on Tuesday night loaned the midfielder Saúl Ñíguez to Chelsea.
On a busy deadline day for Barcelona, they completed the sale of the right-back Emerson Royal to Tottenham on a five-year deal for €25m. The 22-year-old has spent the past two seasons with Real Betis and played for Brazil in the Copa América this summer.
Barcelona also sold the midfielder Ilaix Moriba to RB Leipzig for an initial €16m, with up to €6m to follow. Moriba, an 18-year-old graduate of Barcelona’s academy, broke into the first team towards the end of last season but talks to extend his contract, which expires in June, stalled.
Barcelona’s Sergio Busquets and Jordi Alba have agreed to salary reductions to get the new signing Sergio Agüero registered amid financial fair play regulations. The defender Gerard Piqué previously took a similar step that allowed Memphis Depay, Eric García and Rey Manaj to register with La Liga. Manaj has joined Spezia on loan.
“Sergio and Jordi Alba have agreed to changes in the financial terms of their contracts which included a wage reduction for this season and the deferment of payments for the remaining years,” Barcelona said.