Atletico Madrid are growing increasingly concerned over the future of Antoine Griezmann, after heightened interest from European suitors.
The Frenchman has had a significant rise to the top of European football after impressing with Atleti and the French national side.
La Liga rivals Barcelona and English club Manchester United have been at the forefront of such interest with the former reportedly making contact over a move before the winter break.
With added interest from Ligue 1 side Paris Saint Germain and German’s Bayern Munich – Atleti have now become concerned that the forward will not be at the club past next summer.
And, the club CEO, Miguel Angel Gil Marin has spoken about the club’s concerns.
“Antoine’s future does not depend on us,” he said at an event, as quoted by Marca.
“I cannot stand here and comment for certain on what will happen as it is out of our control, but last summer we made every effort to ensure he remained at Atletico.
“This summer, we will try to do the same again as it took us a lot of effort to get these two players (Griezmann and Diego Costa) to be together at the same club.
“We don’t want to sell him, whether that is now or in the summer, he is a very important player for us but I repeat, it is not in our hands.”
Griezmann has a release clause with Atleti set at €200m currently but that will revert back to half that amount next summer.
Following on from Barca’s interest and supposed contact with the Frenchman’s representatives, Atleti chose to report them to football’s governing body FIFA.
Whilst Barca have denied such reports, the said meeting which took place two weeks ago is said to have opened negotiations with the league leaders looking to sell a number of players before submitting a transfer bid.
Arda Turan, Andre Gomes and Javier Mascherano are all expected to leave – either in January or next summer, allowing Barca to recoup funds for a move for Griezmann and free up their wage bill.
Aside to their interest in Griezmann, Barca have also shown interest in Philippe Coutinho from Liverpool, but it is unlikely a move for both could happen unless further funds are made available.