BARCELONA

Rakitic hints at Barcelona divorce

Ivan Rakitic took to the Camp Nou mixed zone after the Barcelona-Levante game to warn his time at the club was coming to an end.

Rakitic confirms his divorce from Barcelona
JAVIER GANDUL DIARIO AS

Ivan Rakitic and Barcelona may soon begin divorce proceedings. It is still not known when the papers will be signed but the decision has been taken. Rakitic's contract expires in 2021 but all indications are that he will not be at Camp Nou after the summer. 

The Croatian midfielder appeared in the mixed zone of the Camp Nou after Sunday’s match against Levante and took everyone by surprise by speaking candidly of his discontent with his current situation.

“There have been things that I have not liked,” said the 31-year-old. “The people who make decisions know it and we all know it. There were several things I didn't like.”

Rakitic then added that "it was not the time to speak", even though he had already done so.

“I want to turn the page and work in the best possible way. And I want my colleagues, the coaches and the fans to know that I am one hundred percent," he concluded.

Rakitic in action against Levante.

The origins of Rakitic’s fall-out with Barcelona

Rakitic's fall-out with Barça began in the summer of 2018, after the Croatian had asked club president Josep Bartomeu for a contract improvement on the premise that he had received a huge offer from PSG. Bartomeu told him that it was not possible at that time but promised his wish could be fulfilled at a later date.

Unhappy with the president’s response, Rakitic insisted on a transfer to PSG, however Barça demanded that he pay the clause. But in the end, he did not leave for Paris and Barça eventually upgraded his contract.

During the 2018-19 season the relationship between Rakitic and the club was somewhat repaired while the former Sevilla player enjoyed the protection of ex-coach Ernesto Valverde, who considered him indispensable.

But the protection offered to him by Valverde ended last season. With the signing of Frenkie de Jong, Valverde went as far as to publically warn Rakitic that he would have to fight to earn his place. It was then that the cracks in his relationship with Barça began to re-emerge, prompting him to once again consider a move away.

But taking into account he is now 31, clubs will take more time to think about the investment. Those clubs who can offer him a good salary will not pay a large transfer fee, and vice versa. So Rakitic will now have to sit on the exit ramp, waiting for a phone call.