Live Barcelona Blog: Antoine Griezmann's future up in the air amid claims he told friends he will stay at Atletico

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Buenos dias amigos. Welcome to today’s Barcelona blog. Matt Jones and the rest of the Sport360 team will be with you throughout the day with the latest news, rumours and insights from the Camp Nou.

Our daily blog will ensure you have all the latest updates throughout the week but we want you to get involved, too.

Tell us your thoughts on what’s happening by tweeting @Sport360.

6:35pm – Antoine Griezmann’s future remains up in the air amid claims he told friends he will stay at Atletico Madrid

Antoine Griezmann‘s future still remains uncertain after it was initially reported that the forward had told his close friends he was staying at Atletico Madrid.

However, the French striker’s entourage later denied those claims and said no decision had been taken yet on the player’s future.

The 27-year old has been heavily linked to La Liga champions Barcelona and a move to the Camp Nou remains a real possibility. “Today, we don’t know where Antoine will play next season,” a source believed to be close to Griezmann told L’Equipe.

Read more on this story here.

griezmann barca

6:01pm – Barcelona will hold firm on Arsenal and Chelsea approaches for goalkeeper Jasper Cillessen

Arsenal and Chelsea have both made firm approaches to Barcelona to ask about the availability of No2 goalkeeper Jasper Cillessen this summer, according to reports in Spain.

 The Gunners are in the market for a long-term replacement for the aging Petr Cech, who turned 36 last month. And according to Sport, new boss Unai Emery has asked the club’s hierarchy to sign a new goalkeeper this summer.

Chelsea have also enquired about Cillessen’s availability with the future of their stopper Thibaut Courtois unclear.

Read the full story here.

12:19pm – Spain coach Julen Lopetegui heaps praise on Barcelona icon Andres Iniesta

Spain coach Julen Lopetegui was happy to see the diminutive star of Spain’s 2010 World Cup triumph, Andres Iniesta, prove he can still play a pivotal role for his nation as Spain drew 1-1 with Switzerland in a World Cup warm-up match on Sunday.

Barcelona great Iniesta was substituted early in the second half to a standing ovation after shaking off a bang to the knee.

“We are in the preparation phase and we were thinking of replacing him. What matters most to us is what he is still about to give us,” said Lopetegui.

Read the full story here and watch Lopetegui’s tribute to Iniesta here.

Iniesta Spain

10:59am – Barcelona president Josep Bartomeu shoots down chances of Ousmane Dembele leaving

Barcelona president Josep Bartomeu has dashed the hopes of clubs trying to sign exciting French winger Ousmane Dembele by suggesting the youngster is a very important player for the Blaugrana’s future.

Barca spent £135.5m to sign the 21-year-old from Borussia Dortmund last summer, but his first year in Spain was hit by injuries, restricting the France international to just 17 La Liga appearances.

“Dembele is a very young player, a very talented player that we are, of course, expecting a lot from,” said Bartomeu on a trip to Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) in Boston.

Read further on this story here.

Ousmane Dembele 1

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Arsenal and Chelsea approach Barcelona over availability of No2 goalkeeper Jasper Cillessen

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Arsenal and Chelsea have both made firm approaches to Barcelona to ask about the availability of No2 goalkeeper Jasper Cillessen this summer, according to reports in Spain.

The Gunners are in the market for a long-term replacement for the aging Petr Cech, who turned 36 last month. And according to Sport, new boss Unai Emery has asked the club’s hierarchy to sign a new goalkeeper this summer.

Arsenal have reportedly made a direct approach to Barca to gauge whether a deal is possible for the Dutchman. But Chelsea have also enquired about Cillessen’s availability with the future of their stopper Thibaut Courtois unclear

Barcelona are ready to stand firm, however, and are not prepared to sell the Netherlands international for anything lower than his €60 million (£52m) release clause.

Cillessen is second choice to Germany’s Marc-Andre ter Stegen but is understood to be willing to remain at the Camp Nou unless he receives an offer he can’t turn down.

Liverpool have also been linked with a move for the 29-year-old but, unlike Arsenal and Chelsea,have yet to make a move.

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Barcelona president Josep Bartomeu shoots down suggestions Ousmane Dembele could leave Camp Nou

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Barcelona president Josep Bartomeu has dashed the hopes of clubs trying to sign exciting French winger Ousmane Dembele by suggesting the youngster is a very important player for the Blaugrana’s future.

Barca spent £135.5m to sign the 21-year-old from Borussia Dortmund last summer, but his first year in Spain was hit by injuries, restricting the France international to just 17 La Liga appearances.

Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp joked with reporters this week that he was interested to hear Dembele was on the market, while Arsenal were hoping chief scout Sven Mislintat’s connection to Dortmund from his time with the Bundesliga outfit could secure a loan move.

But Bartomeu has shot down any plans the Premier League duo and others may have by stating just how important Dembele and Philippe Coutinho are to Barcelona’s future.

On a trip to Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) in Boston Bartomeu said: “(Philippe) Coutinho, Dembele are for us a big investment.

Kylian Mbappe celebrates with Ousmane Dembele after his goal for France against Italy.

Kylian Mbappe celebrates with Ousmane Dembele after his goal for France against Italy.

“They are very important players and we expect a lot from them. Coutinho probably in the last four months has been very active for the team.

“But Dembele is a very young player, a very talented player that we are, of course, expecting a lot from.

“It’s not easy to play in Barcelona the first year because the model of football is quite different from the rest. But after one year I’m sure we are going to see Dembele and Coutinho at a very high level.”

Dembele scored for France as they beat Italy 3-1 in Nice on Friday.

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