An angry Saul Niguez claims he’s being “kicked out” by Atletico Madrid amid speculation over a controversial swap deal for Antoine Griezmann and links to Liverpool.
Barcelona are in dire financial trouble and were only able to tie down Lionel Messi to a new deal after he agreed to reduce his salary. However, Griezmann is also paid handsomely, with the Catalan giants looking to get the player off their books.
A swap proposal has been mooted that would see the France star head back to Madrid, while Saul would join Barca.
The Nou Camp outfit are looking to get Saul on board after missing out on Gini Wijnaldum. The former Liverpool midfielder looked set to join them but opted for PSG instead.
Reports have claimed Saul, who has also been linked with a swap for two Liverpool stars, is happy to move to the Nou Camp. However, a video captured by El Desmarque suggests that is not the case.
The player stopped to sign autographs for supporters outside Atleti ‘s pre-season training base. But, in Spanish, he was heard saying: “They’re [Atletico] kicking me out of here, man.”
LaLiga bosses are keeping an eye on the potential deal as swap deals technically do not exist in La Liga. Transfers are meant to be arranged separately with their own valuations.
Marca states that the governing body are watching closely to ensure that neither club get up to any “accounting tricks”.
Konate admits ‘strange’ trait
Meanwhile, new Liverpool defender Ibrahima Konate says that he can contribute goals to Jurgen Klopp’s side, even if more of them “strangely” come with his feet.
The 6ft 3in centre-back has swelled the Reds’ ranks ahead of the new season in a key transfer move. Following all three senior options suffering injury last campaign, Klopp did not want a repeat. He also wanted to replace Dejan Lovren, while looking to the long-term for a new player at the back.
Konate, 22, ticks all those boxes and has impressed early on in Liverpool’s pre-season training camp in Austria.
Giving his first interview to the club’s official website, the Frenchman offered a breakdown of what he will offer Liverpool.
“Yes, I am big, I am strong and I am not scared with the ball,” he said.
“I can score more with my foot than my head, it is a little bit strange! This is me!
“Yes, I have this quality, but I have to work again and again and more and more and more for being a very good defender.
“I have watched some Premier League games and everybody knows there is so much intensity, strong players. This is difficult but I [will] love the challenge.”