According to the latest reports, Premier League side Chelsea are looking to join the race with Bayern Munich to sign Barcelona midfield superstar Ivan Rakitic in the summer transfer window. The European giants will dent a massive blow to the Blues if they look to heat up the chase in signing the Croatian superstar as Rakitic would prefer to play in a club that has a clear plan towards the future.
When Maurizio Sarri took charge of Chelsea back in the summer of 2018, he took over the reins from fellow Italian and compatriot Antonio Conte. The former Napoli master tactician has done admirably well so far but is slowly starting to feel the same problem that almost every Chelsea manager faces. The West London club currently sits in sixth place on the Premier League table and is in the hunt to finish in the top four in order to play Champions League football next season. However, recent results have been frustrating Sarri as Chelsea suffered heavy defeats to Bournemouth and Manchester City. Chelsea also got dumped out of the FA Cup as fierce rivals Manchester United knocked out the Blues in their own backyard.
Sarri received plenty of praise and plaudits from pundits and fans all across the globe initially as he brought in an attractive, effective and fluent style of play which got the nickname ‘Sarriball’. But due to the dispositioning of key players and the poor stats of playmaker Jorginho, Chelsea fans are unhappy and are desperate for results rather than philosophy. Sarri has backed Jorginho who is yet to claim an assist or score for the club since his move from Napoli. And French midfielder N’golo Kante has been moved out of place in order to fit the system and he has been operating as a box to box midfielder.
Now Chelsea is looking to sign another midfielder who can fit Sarri’s system and have lined up a move for Croatian superstar Ivan Rakitic. The Barcelona man has been at the Camp Nou since 2014 and won the Champions League once and three La Liga titles with Barcelona. Rakitic’s current deal with Barcelona expires in the summer of 2021 and although Ernesto Valverde has requested the Croat to remain at the club, Rakitic is considering his options.
At 30 years of age, Rakitic is entering the twilight years of his career and Barcelona are looking to revamp their squad by luring in youngsters like Frenkie De Jong from Ajax and Adrien Rabiot from Paris Saint Germain. Therefore Rakitic is looking to move on amid these speculations as a host of clubs in Europe are fighting for his signature. Inter Milan, Bayern Munich, Manchester United and now even Chelsea are keeping tabs on the midfield maestro.
The Catalonian side has slapped a £44 million price tag on Rakitic and Bundesliga champions Bayern Munich is keen on swooping in for the midfielder. However, with Chelsea’s condition any transfer ban, the Blues may have to look at an alternate option to sign another star midfielder to fill in the void in the Stamford Bridge midfield.