According to latest reports, Liverpool has also joined the race with Manchester United for signing Barcelona midfielder Ivan Rakitic. The midfield maestro may see his game-time drastically reduce with the potential plans the club are willing to enforce in the near future and wants to secure his career elsewhere. However, Ligue 1 giants Paris Saint Germain are the favorites in luring the star midfielder to the Parc De Prince.
The 30-year-old Croatian has been a key member for Barcelona since his arrival at the Camp Nou in 2014 from La Liga rivals Sevilla. Rakitic captained Sevilla as they won the UEFA Europa League in 2013 just before the Catalonian’s were attracted by him. In his first season with Barcelona, Rakitic aided his side to the treble and also scored in the Champions League final against Juventus.
However, with the arrival of Ousmane Dembele, Paulinho and Philippe Coutinho in the past two transfer windows the club are keen on re-enforcing their squad to make it attack heavy which could see Rakitic restricted to the bench on many occasions. Furthermore, La Blaugrana is also reportedly in the process of making a bid for Atletico Madrid striker Antoine Griezmann in the summer which would push Rakitic lower down the pecking order.
Manchester United boss Jose Mourinho is unhappy with Paul Pogba and Nemanja Matic in central midfield and will look to sign the versatile Rakitic in order to bolster his midfield department. The former Basel man has the ability to play anywhere in the midfield as well on the flanks.
Liverpool is unable to negotiate a new deal with German midfielder Emre Can and Reds boss Jurgen Klopp is desperate to add a quality midfielder in his ranks. However, the two English sides will face stiff competition from French side Paris Saint Germain as they need to rebuild their team again for the Champions League next season.
The French capital are heavy favorites to land Rakitic in the summer as their midfield general Thiago Motta is unable to last the whole 90 minutes and run up and down the pitch as he used to, they have also got the deepest pocket in Europe and have shown it earlier as they secured one of the former Barcelona superstar’s last term as Neymar joined for a record transfer fee (£198 million).
At PSG, Rakitic would be playing alongside his former Barcelona teammates Dani Alves and Neymar and would be relishing the prospect of playing regularly in central midfield. He is pushing for a move away from the Camp Nou and it’s unlikely that the club would want to keep him against his will.
But according to me, I feel Rakitic should join either Liverpool or Manchester United as the English sides can offer him more game-time and he would be able to express himself better. He still has a good couple of years in him at the top level and a player like him should not be wasted on the bench. Barcelona have emerged victorious against Athletic Bilbao with a margin of 2-0.