Ivan Rakitic has grown disillusioned under Luis Enrique and is ready to leave Barcelona, according to reports
The Croatian midfielder has been linked with moves to England several times over the last few months with Manchester United said to be keen on bringing the 28-year old to Old Trafford.
And, United have been given a big boost with Rakitic said to be considering his options recently, according to Mundo Deportivo. The report claims that Rakitic is unable to understand his treatment by Luis Enrique’s decision to leave the midfielder on the bench against Espanyol, despite being completely fit to play, contrary to reports that he had some muscular discomfort.
Francesc Aguilar, a well known reporter in Spain, claims that the Croatian, who is known to be a consummate professional, was visibly angered in the locker room. Luis Enrique revealed that he decided to leave Rakitic on the bench due to ‘technical reasons’, but this has reportedly not gone down well with Rakitic.
It has become commonplace this season for the Croatian midfielder to be substituted early during a game or not feature at all. Rakitic was substituted in the 60th minute of Barcelona’s clash with Real Madrid in this month’s El Clasico and has not featured since then. Rakitic’s lack of game time has unsurprisingly coincided with the return of Andres Iniesta but the midfielder is said to be unhappy at how things have gone this season.
This comes as a surprise, considering several outlets report that Rakitic would be signing a new 5-year contract with Barcelona earlier this year. The midfielder also reportedly rejected advances from Manchester United and Chelsea in order to stay at Barcelona in the summer but that appears to have changed now.
Mundo Deportivo further claim that a ‘senior leader’ of the Catalan club is growing concerned at the situation developing between Enrique and Rakitic and that he will ask Enrique directly what is to be done at the technical summit of the club’s staff.
The news will come as a big boost to both Jose Mourinho and Antonio Conte, who are looking to strengthen their squads. Conte is already having a brilliant season with Chelsea but is looking for additions to the midfield options. Meanwhile, Mourinho is still looking for a quality No. 10 after Wayne Rooney’s struggles to impress in that role.
Should this situation at Barcelona intensify, it will not be surprising to see Rakitic make a move to the English Premier League.