Maurizio Sarri makes move for Barcelona's Ivan Rakitic

Tanya Simon
January 31, 2019

Manchester United and Arsenal are also keeping tabs on the 30-year-old's situation, with the latter particularly looking for reliable midfield reinforcements.

The Croatia global midfielder is once again seeing his future in Catalunya called into questions.

Chelsea are preparing a summer move for Barcelona star Ivan Rakitic as they look to finally fill the void left by Cesc Fabregas, according to reports in Spain.

Following an underwhelming campaign under Antonio Conte, new coach Sarri has been able to reshape the Chelsea squad, particularly in the midfield department where the duo of Jorginho and N'Golo Kante have performed incredibly well.

However, last week, Spanish daily AS claimed that the LaLiga champions will be forced to sell two big-name players in order to balance their books at the end of the season, and the three names in the frame for the chop are Philippe Coutinho, Samuel Umtiti and Rakitić.

Barca could also be keen to get Rakitic's wages off their overall bill to free up funds to make more signings.

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Asked if De Jong's arrival could force him out from Barcelona, Rakitic said at the Mundo Deportivo gala on Monday night: "That's a good question for the "Mister" [manager] or the 'Presi [president]".

"Those that know me know that I am just focused on playing".

"I am really happy here, everyone knows it, above all the "Presi" [president]". I have a lot of confidence. I have nothing else to say'.

"I am in my best form and I want to stay at Barcelona", he was quoted as saying by Marca.

Rakitic, who was heavily linked with Paris Saint-Germain during the summer of 2018, is now taking in a fifth season with Barca. I want to enjoy football and I want to enjoy Barca.

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