In spite of the bitter rivalry between Real Madrid and FC Barcelona, Blaugrana midfielder Ivan Rakitic has said that he wants the Los Blancos to win the Champions League.

Barcelona were dumped out of Europe’s premier football competition by Atletico Madrid in the quarter final stage last month. This has robbed the Blaugrana of a potential repeat of their historic treble last season. There is still a very good chance that they may win the double, as they are currently top of the league table, and are set to face Sevilla in the final of the Copa Del Rey.

However, getting knocked out of the Champions League seems to have really knocked the steam out of the stuttering Catalans, as they go in search of the remaining two trophies.

Keeping in mind the historic rivalry between Barcelona and Real Madrid, one would have expected the Blaugrana players to root for any team other than Real Madrid in the Champions League. But, that is not the case with Barcelona midfielder Ivan Rakitic. In fact, the Croatian midfielder explained that it is for the sake of his countryman Luka Modric, that he will be supporting Real Madrid in their quest for a record 11th European Cup.

Rakitic rooting for Luka Modric to win Europe’s top prize

“I’ll be rooting for Luka,” Rakitic was quoted saying to Croatian channel Sportsko Novoski [via Marca]. “I want him to get to the final and win.”

FC BARCELONA VS REAL MADRIDBarcelona were well on their way to win a treble, but a run of six matches in which they lost four, drew one, and won just one match, saw them being dumped out of the Champions League, while also letting La Liga rivals Atletico and Real Madrid back into the title race.

However, they seem to have stabilised the ship with resounding 8-0 and 6-0 wins over Deportivo La Coruna and Sporting Gijon in their last two La Liga games. This has brought back the belief that they can pull through to the La Liga title in spite of the recent blip, especially as there are just three matches left.

“We have three games left, so we don’t want any mistakes,” said Rakitic. “Though we have been unlucky as well, we had the same number of shots against Valencia as we did against Deportivo La Coruna, but the ball would not go in.”

Croatia and their golden trio

Team CroatiaAlthough the Croats are the third best ranked team in group D of Euro 2016, they have the talent at their disposal to surprise the very best sides in the competition. Thus, it is imperative that their top players get more exposure in the top club competitions across Europe.

The likes of Rakitic, Modric, and Mandzukic will be the three players that the national side will look up to in the European Championships. However, the team is not over-reliant on just the three of them. With the likes of Marcelo Brozovic, Dejan Lovren, Mateo Kovacic, and Ivan Perisic in their ranks, Croatia are one of the many dark horses of the tournament.

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