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Barça-Rakitic contract stalemate points to Camp Nou exit

Valverde has explained to the player that a place in the starting XI will be complicated as contract renewal talks stall between club and agent.

Barça-Rakitic contract stalemate points to Camp Nou exit
Gorka Leiza Diario AS

As time passes, it appears that Ivan Rakitic's days as a FC Barcelona player are numbered. Coach Ernesto Valverde alluded to the player's situation in a recent press conference as it was confirmed that Sergi Roberto is set to be used in a more attacking role in a Barça midfield which is already over-subscribed. The fact that the player's representatives and club have been unable to agree a new deal for the Croatian is another motive that could see the player seek an opportunity away from Camp Nou.

The Croatian international himself has been adamant in his public declarations that he has no intention of abandoning the Catalan club. He maintains he will push for a place in the team despite the fierce competition in the starting line-up that the acquisition of Dutch player Frenkie de Jong presents coupled with the new role the sporting directors have earmarked for Sergi Roberto.

Barcelona also need to cutback on their salary spend and this may be an added stimulus to sell the player who is on contract through to 2021 with Inter Milan expressing an interest in securing the Croatian's services. Ernesto Valverde's pre-season message regarding Rakitic has changed from that of the 2018-19 pre-season where the Basque coach claimed: "we're here to win games, not make money" with his present tone a more sombre, recently stating "time moves on for us all".

Barcelona's Ivan Rakitic in action.