Antoine Griezmann: When Fulham nearly signed France World Cup winner for cheap

Antoine Griezmann: When Fulham nearly signed France World Cup winner for cheap

Rene Otinga
February 3, 2023 at 12:00 PM
  • Antoine Griezmann moved to Atletico Madrid from Real Sociedad in 2014
  • Things would have been different, however, if Fulham had prioritized the talented Frenchman
  • The Cottages had the chance to sign him in 2014, but instead went for a Greek forward who ended up flopping in the Premier League

When it comes to close shaves in football transfers, nothing is quite like the story of how Fulham missed out on Antoine Griezmann.

As at 2023, Griezmann remains an accomplished figure in football, and is still considered one of the best players in world football.

In his younger days, he was the subject of interest from various clubs in Spain, including Atletico Madrid, who took up his services in 2014.

However, it is worth noting that Griezmann may well have ended up in the Premier League, with the then relegation favourites Fulham.

In 2014, a struggling Fulham side, under the guidance of head coach Rene Meulensteen, were in dire need of some bolstering up front.

The club approached Real Sociedad, who were in possession of 23-year old Griezmann, over a potential transfer.

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At the time, the Frenchman was making a name for himself in La Liga, and was valued at a mere £12 million.

As reported on The Mirror, the deal somehow fell through, and Fulham ended up missing on Griezmann, who would go on to win the World Cup four years later.

Instead, The Cottages went for Greek striker Kostas Mitroglou, whose stint at Fulham was more than underwhelming.

Not only did Mitroglou fail to score for his team, he only managed one start for the London side, and two substitute appearances.

He also formed part of the Fulham team that was relegated months later.

What happened to Griezmann

In contrast, Griezmann’s ratings continued to rise after his move to Atletico Madrid, and established himself as a great in Euro 2016 where he was the top scorer with six goals, as per Transfermkt.

July 2019 saw Barcelona activate Griezmann’s €120 million buy-out clause to sign the Frenchman for a fee nearly 10 times that which Fulham would have signed him for five years ago.

The Frenchman however struggled as a Catalan and was loaned back to Atletico where he is currently contracted until 2026.

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Rene Otinga
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