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Barcelona: Ernesto Valverde told Ivan Rakitic during pre-season tour of Japan he wouldn’t feature

Barcelona: Ernesto Valverde told Ivan Rakitic during pre-season tour of Japan he wouldn’t feature

Midfielder Ivan Rakitic has become frozen out at Barcelona. 

The Croatian has started just one match for the Blaugrana this term, with the likes of Frenkie de Jong, Sergio Busquets and Arthur all preferred in Ernesto Valverde’s starting XI.

It is a strange situation for the 31-year-old, who has been relied upon heavily during his nine-year career in Spain. Firstly with Sevilla, the 2018 World Cup finalist was an integral member of the club’s first team under managers Gregorio Manzano, Marcelino, Michel and Unai Emery.

Then, having impressed for Sevilla, Rakitic earned himself a £16m move to Barcelona in 2014, where he once again became a regular feature for the Catalan giants, winning 12 major honours with the club during the previous five campaigns.

This season, however, the Croatia international has become surplus to requirements, with it now looking a huge possibility that he will move on in 2020 – potentially to Italy – where Inter Milan are rumoured to be heavily interested in his services.

Manager Valverde reportedly told Rakitic back in the summer, during a pre-season tour of Japan, that he would see game-time limited upon the arrival of 22-year-old midfield maestro Frenkie de Jong, and it has been confirmed this season (via Sport).

It is a huge shame that Rakitic’s situation has turned so sour after so many years of success at the Camp Nou.

For the sake of the 31-year-old’s career, it seems a necessity that he departs next year; hopefully to a side which values all he has to offer, which is still plenty.

Barca fans, would you be sad to see Rakitic leave the club? Comment your thoughts below…

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