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Arsenal were going to sign Antoine Griezmann in 2017 – Gunners have themselves to blame | Football | Sport

Arsenal would have signed Barcelona star Antoine Griezmann in 2017 had they finished in the Champions League qualifying slots, it has been claimed.

The World Cup winner is currently strutting his stuff at the Nou Camp having been snapped up by the Catalan giants from Atletico Madrid during the summer.

Yet The Athletic claim that Arsenal could have signed Griezmann instead.

It is claimed that the France international would have moved to north London had Arsenal been able to finish in the Premier League top four.

The Gunners finished fifth that year, just a point behind fourth-placed Liverpool.

Chelsea, under the guidance of Antonio Conte, won the Premier League title by amassing 93 points from their 38 games.

Tottenham finished second on 86 points with Manchester City, in their debut season under Pep Guardiola, finishing third.

Arsenal were linked with Griezmann that summer, 12 months after he’d top-scored for France at Euro 2016.

But he ended up staying at Atletico Madrid until this year, ultimately joining Barcelona in a huge £107million transfer deal.

Griezmann previously said that he also came close to moving to Arsenal back in 2013, four years before the Gunners’ Premier League failings prevented a move from happening.

And he claimed he was told on deadline day that year that the Gunners, despite their interest, wouldn’t be making an offer.

“I waited, I waited, and I kept waiting,” he said two years ago.

“When there was no news, Eric called Grimandi, who said that the manager was still interested in me [and] to keep waiting.

“Finally a few hours before the market closed, he let us know Arsenal would not make a move. I don’t like to be told something and for it not to happen.

“So when Eric told me later that the London club were interested again I told him: ‘Forget it, after the blow they gave us.”

While Arsenal didn’t get Griezmann in 2017, they did add Granit Xhaka and Shkodran Mustafi to their ranks.

And the following January they also secured the signature of Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, with the Gabon international touching down from Bundesliga titans Borussia Dortmund

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