Juventus are reportedly willing to use former Liverpool midfielder Emre Can as a makeweight in their attempt to sign Ivan Rakitic from Barcelona.
According to a report from Italian publication Tuttosport, Serie A champions Juventus are intent on signing Croatian international Ivan Rakitic from Barcelona and are prepared to send Emre Can the other way as part of the deal to land their target.
Rakitic’s future at Barcelona has been a subject of transfer speculation all summer following the arrival of Dutch sensation Frenkie de Jong at Camp Nou. The midfielder had been heavily linked with a switch to Premier League giants Manchester United, but nothing materialized on that front.
Rakitic, for his part, has stated that he has no plans of leaving Barcelona this summer, but the rumours refuse to die down. Only a week ago, there had been reports of interest in the Croatian from Serie A giants Inter Milan and now, their arch-rivals Juventus have also joined the hunt for the seasoned campaigner’s signature.
Juventus have a bloated midfield department following the summer arrivals of Aaron Ramsey and Adrien Rabiot. Along with the two new additions, the Serie A champions have Miralem Pjanic, Rodrigo Bentancur, Sami Khedira, Emre Can and Blaise Matuidi among their ranks.
However, the Bianconeri are keen on adding Rakitic to their roster as well, as they look to clinch a ninth consecutive Serie A title and push for the UEFA Champions League trophy. To that end, they are prepared to use former Liverpool man Emre Can as a makeweight to push the deal forward.
The 25-year-old Can joined Juventus from Liverpool on a free transfer in the summer of 2018. In his debut season with the Italian heavyweights, the German international racked up 37 appearances across all competitions, scoring 4 goals and setting up one more, on the way to winning the Serie A title.
Emre Can is contracted with Juventus till the summer of 2022. The former Liverpool star is a quality player with the best years ahead of him, but the Bianconeri consider him expendable and are prepared to use him in a player plus cash deal to sign Rakitic from Barcelona, only a year after bringing him on board.
Rakitic’s first-team chances are likely to see a reduction this term following de Jong’s arrival. However, the midfielder remains keen on staying and battling for his place in the team. The Catalans though, after investing heavily this summer, might be open to a sale, in order to balance the books, especially as they look to re-sign Neymar from PSG.
Rakitic has two years left on his current contract with Barcelona. But, it remains to be seen if he stays at Camp Nou beyond the ongoing transfer window or ends up joining Juventus, with Can moving the other way.