Barcelona end Liverpool’s hopes of prising away stalwart this summer

Barcelona have essentially closed the door on Liverpool’s chances of signing midfield ace Ivan Rakitic this summer, as per reports.

The Croatian international has been a key figure since joining the Catalan giants in 2014, making over 200 appearances for the club and winning various trophies including two La Liga titles and the Champions League.

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Although he prepares to turn 30 at the weekend, he evidently remains a pivotal part of Ernesto Valverde’s plans having made 42 appearances in all competitions already this season.

Further, it’s no surprise despite his age that he is still attracting attention outside of Barcelona, and according to The Sun, via AS, Liverpool have been keen on signing the midfield stalwart at the end of the season.

Unfortunately for the Merseyside outfit though, it’s claimed that Barca have no intention of selling him, and that in turn will force them to switch their focus elsewhere to address a potential headache for Jurgen Klopp.

As noted by the club’s official site, the German tactician will welcome RB Leipzig midfielder Naby Keita to Anfield this summer, as the two clubs have already reached an agreement on a transfer.

However, as per Sky Sports, there are still doubts over the future of Emre Can, who will see his contract expire at the end of the season and so will be available on a free transfer.

Despite the signing of Keita, that could still leave a hole that needs to be addressed in the Liverpool squad, as for a club looking to compete on various fronts and win major honours in the years ahead, Klopp will want to add more quality and depth rather just merely bringing in one player having lost one.

As a result, given the quality that Rakitic possesses, it would have been a great signing for the Reds. Sadly for them, it would be a huge surprise if Barcelona were to alter their stance and consider offers for him at the end of the season, given his ongoing importance to the team.

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