Atlético Madrid are desperate for Antoine Griezmann not to leave at the end of the season, and chiefs of the LaLiga club have stepped up their efforts to persuade the Frenchman to remain a cornerstone of Los Rojiblancos' future.
Barcelona president has confirmed Griezmann contact
AS understands that Atlético's president, Enrique Cerezo, met Griezmann today at a well-known restaurant in Madrid to outline the club's plans for the forward - which are certain to include a pay rise - and to find out the player's intentions.
The discussions between Cerezo and Griezmann come just 24 hours after Barcelona president Josep María Bartomeu fuelled talk of the 27-year-old joining the Blaugrana in the summer by confirming to RAC-1 that he had met the footballer's agent in October.
Atleti reported Barcelona to Fifa last December
In December 2017, Atlético reported Barça to Fifa, world football's governing body, for illegally approaching Griezmann after the Catalans' director of institutional relations, Guillermo Amor, publicly acknowledged contact with the player, whose release clause is set at 100m euros.
Since renewing his Atlético contract in 2017, Griezmann - who has also long been linked with Manchester United, particularly last summer - has been far from categorical about his commitment to remaining at the Wanda Metropolitano, above all in interviews in the French media.
Number 7 shirt seemingly left free for Griezmann
In recent months, speculation over a Barça swoop for Griezmann has begun to hot up, not least when the club appeared to keep their vacant number 7 shirt back for the striker instead of giving it to big-money January signing Philippe Coutinho.
In March, the French media outlet Le 10 Sport claimed that Griezmann had an agreement in place with Barcelona and wouldn't be convinced to stay at Atleti, before a report in Telefoot said the ex-Real Sociedad man had denied any such deal.