Atletico Madrid’s transfer ban could be the seminal moment of this summer’s window.
The La Liga side’s embargo, which was originally introduced in July 2016, was upheld by the Court of Arbitration of Sport on Tuesday after the club appealed it.
The ban stops Atletico registering new players this summer, which could have huge ramifications for a number of high profile players and the Premier League clubs courting them.
In the case of Antoine Griezmann – already the most exhausting transfer saga of the summer – many felt the ban would hinder Manchester United’s hopes of signing the Frenchman as Atletico are now unable to replace him should he leave.
But actually, on the contrary, it’s good news for United.
What does this mean for Griezmann and Manchester United?
Griezmann has an £86m release clause in his contract, meaning Atletico are powerless to stopping him leaving should United table the required fee.
The French striker, who has scored 35 goals for club and country, has already indicated a move to United is in the offing when rating his chances of joining Jose Mourinho at ‘6/10’ in a recent French TV interview.
He’s also stressed that should he stay at the Vicente Calderon the club would need to strengthen their options in the summer – something they will now not be able to do.
What about other Premier League clubs?
The news is also positive for other Premier League clubs with Atletico now out of the running for some of Europe’s hottest properties.
Lyon striker Alexandre Lacazette, in particular, has been heavily linked with a move to Spain in recent weeks but may now think twice, knowing should he sign he won’t be registered to play.
That means the likes of Liverpool and Arsenal can step up their pursuit of the 37-goal French forward.
Chelsea hitman Diego Costa’s future has also been thrown into doubt now because the Spaniard said last week the only club he’d leave Stamford Bridge for would be Atletico.
No doubt about it – this should make for an intriguing few months of transfer rumblings.