Atletico Madrid are becoming resigned to losing Antoine Griezmann this summer, with Barcelona the favourites to sign him.
Griezmann said last week he wants his future resolved before he travels with France to the World Cup in the summer.
However, with a buyout clause of £87m (100m euros), Sky Sports Spanish football expert Balague told La Liga Weekly podcast that it looks like Barca are closing on the 27-year-old.
“Barcelona are trying to do it the nice way, and the other way, to try to make sure he doesn’t go anywhere else,” he said.
“They are going to Atletico Madrid and saying ‘when you are ready to talk, let’s sit down, I know it’s 100m euros buyout clause but if we give you a little bit more will you be happy and we can still be friends?
At the same time Atletico Madrid are trying to convince him to stay, telling him we will get three or four top players, but they are resigned to him leaving. He wants everything sorted before the World Cup starts.
“Barcelona are making effort to ensure way for the France International ,Antonio Griezmann . He knows he will have to reduce his wage perhaps, with lots of bonuses linked with performances, because around 83 per cent of the income at Barcelona goes into the wages, so it is a tense situation as the recommended amount is about 70 per cent. They won’t be able to change that because they still need to renew one or two.”
Manchester United were reportedly close to signing Griezmann last summer while Chelsea have also been linked with a potential move.