France international Antoine Griezmann took a 40 per cent wage cut to rejoin Atletico Madrid from Barcelona, it has been revealed.
Griezmann completed a surprise return to Atletico on deadline day, with Barca sanctioning his departure on an initial season-long loan deal.
The Frenchman was one of several first-team players to leave Camp Nou over the summer as the Blaugrana sought to reduce their overall salary costs, and he made a big sacrifice in order to make sure the move went ahead.
Griezmann reportedly agreed to almost halve his weekly earnings in order to head back to Wanda Metropolitano, where he previously spent five years before joining Barca in 2019.
Atletico did not pay any fee for the loan, but they can extend his temporary contract by one more year if Barca sign off on it next summer, at which point further payments would be required.
The Rojiblancos will give the Blaugrana a maximum of €40 million (£34m/$47m) including add-ons to make the move permanent if Griezmann plays at least 50 per cent of their matches in the 2022-23 season.
If the 30-year-old does not hit that mark then Atletico won’t owe Barca anything, but such a scenario would likely only arise if he suffered a serious injury.
Griezmann was revered as one of the top strikers in Europe upon his arrival at Camp Nou two years ago, but struggled to settle at Barca under the weight of a €120 million (£103m/$142m) price tag.
The World Cup winner was regularly played out of position to accommodate Lionel Messi, who also left the club in the summer before joining Paris Saint-Germain on a free transfer, and only managed to score 35 goals in 102 appearances.
Griezmann is currently away on international duty with the French national team, but he will report back to Wanda Metropolitano after his country’s World Cup qualifying clash with Finland on Tuesday.
The experienced forward could then be in line to make his second debut for Atletico on Sunday, with a trip to Espanyol on the cards for Diego Simeone’s side.
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