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C'est magnifique! Barcelona confirm $135mn signing of World Cup-winner Antoine Griezmann

C'est magnifique! Barcelona confirm $135mn signing of World Cup-winner Antoine Griezmann
Spanish club Barcelona have finally announced the signing of French World Cup-winner Antoine Griezmann for a fee of $135 million from La Liga rivals Atletico Madrid after meeting the player's buyout clause.

The transfer of forward Griezmann to the Catalan club has been made official after weeks of speculation, with the 28-year-old having announced he would depart Atletico after five years in the Spanish capital earlier this summer.

Barcelona announced in a statement on Friday: "FC Barcelona has paid the 120 million euro buyout clause to release Antoine Griezmann from Atlético Madrid.

"The player will sign a contract with his new club for the next five seasons, through to 30 June 2024, with a buyout clause of 800 million euros."

The club went on to say that with the move, Griezmann "takes another step forward in his career with the goal of consolidating his place as one of the best players in the world."

Barcelona are the current Spanish league champions, and the Frenchman will link up with Argentine great, five-time Ballon d'Or winner and all-time Barca top scorer Lionel Messi in attack at Camp Nou.

Despite a whirlwind of interest in the player following his role in France's World Cup 2018 win almost exactly a year ago, when the player scored a penalty during a 4-2 win against Croatia in the final in Moscow, Greizmann saw out another season in Madrid.

It is likely Atletico's failure to win the UEFA Champions League last season, despite enjoying a comfortable first leg position against favorites Juventus in last season's round of 16, was a key factor in Griezmann's decision.

Griezmann was a losing finalist with Atletico in the competition in 2016 against Real Madrid, where he missed a penalty in normal time but scored his spot kick in the resulting shootout, although his side went on to lose 5-3 overall.

C'est magnifique! Barcelona confirm $135mn signing of World Cup-winner Antoine Griezmann

It is reported that Real Sociedad, the club at which Griezmann came up through the ranks and began his professional career, have made €24 million from the move as part of a re-sale clause. Griezmann helped the Basque club to winning the Segunda Division and gain promotion to Spain's top flight.

Griezmann departs Atletico having won a Europa League and UEFA Super Cup in 2018, as well as the Supercopa de Espana in 2014, the year he arrived at the club.

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