Rakitic could be linchpin in Neymar deal

PSG have not forgotten about the Croatian midfielder, who Tuchel really likes, and who they tried to poach from Barcelona last summer.

Rakitic could be linchpin in Neymar deal

The Neymar saga could drag on for some time yet. Leonardo, PSG's new sporting director, knows that the Brazilian wants to leave and the president of the club, Nasser Al Khelaifi, knows he has started a new era at the club after his interview with France Football in which he said that the club would not tolerate celebrity behaviour anymore.

Neymar's father is doing something that seemed impossible two years ago when he landed in Paris: he is starting to negotiate his son's exit with Barcelona the most likely destination.

PSG looking to maximise return for Neymar

That does not mean that PSG will roll out the red carpet for the player as he makes his way to the exit. They will try to recoup as much money as they can and they will also try to improve their sporting situation. And a player that could be important in any potential deal is Ivan Rakitic. 

Tuchel is a big fan of the Croatian midfielder and wanted him last season. Back then, it was the intervention of Valverde that prevented the move along with the promise from Bartomeu that he would offer him a no deal and would not sell him unless his release clause was met.

Rakitic and Coutinho are two names currently being mentioned as potssible makeweight for a Neymar deal and Dembélé has not been ruled out either. The Brazilian, who is at the Copa América at the moment, has given his agents the thumbs up to negotiate his departure from PSG but work still needs to be done to make him a Barcelona player.

The Crotain midfielder would improve Tuchel's midfield automatically where he would join Verratti after the exit of Rabiot. That being said, Rakitic has an important place at Barcelona and knows exactly what Valverde requires. There could be a conflict of interest between the decision-makers and the manager if they try to take away the 31-year-old.