Antoine Griezmann's inner circle wants him to stay at Atletico Madrid

Lionel Messi says France's forward Antoine Griezmann is one of the best players in the world. Jeff Pachoud  AFP

Lionel Messi says France's forward Antoine Griezmann is one of the best players in the world. Jeff Pachoud AFP

Atlético Madrid have reached an agreement to sign Thomas Lemar from Monaco.

Lemar was strongly linked with both Liverpool and Arsenal last season but is now set for a move to the Wanda Metropolitano.

Multiple people within Antoine Griezmann's inner circle say they want him to stay at Atletico Madrid rather than join Barcelona next season, sources close to the forward told ESPN FC's Julien Laurens.

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Antoine Griezmann said recently that he was undecided about where he would play come next season, but that he would make a decision before the World Cup.

The forward has been expected to confirm his future before the World Cup and said Saturday that was still the case.

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"I am very sorry, I know you have all been waiting but I will not give my decision today".

He had previously stated the matter would be sorted before the World Cup, which begins on Thursday.

It is the second successive summer that Griezmann has been the subject of speculation over a big-money switch away from the Rojiblancos.

Barcelona had hoped to sign the 27-year-old on July 1, when his release clause drops to €100 million, but Atletico have offered him an improved contract worth a reported €23m a year.

Griezmann has called on Atletico to invest more in their squad, and Lemar's arrival is a sign the La Liga runners-up are taking their star's advice.

He has scored three goals in 12 matches with the national team since his November 2016 debut.

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