Tuesday, August 16, 2022

Tottenham Hotspur Keen On Giving Barcelona Midfielder An Escape Route: Should Barca Sell Their Man?

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Nikhil Vinodh
Nikhil has been an avid Chelsea fan for as long as the concept of time has existed and rumours say that he even bleeds blue. Having lived in the UK for 3 years, Nikhil is said to have an excellent understanding of the atmosphere surrounding the English game. His role model is the greatest manager of all time - Jose Mourinho.

According to a recent report by Spanish source Mundo Deportivo, quoting journalist Abdellah Boulma, Premier League high-flyers Tottenham Hotspur are the latest club to register an interest in acquiring the services of Barcelona’s Croatian international midfield ace Ivan Rakitic. The report suggests that Tottenham are joined on the list of suitors by some of the biggest teams in the continent – including but not limited to Sevilla, Juventus and even Napoli.

Knowing full well that the Croatian is set to leave the Nou Camp at the end of the season, the report suggests that Mourinho has asked for Rakitic to be signed by Spurs, in an attempt to strengthen the core of his team further. Rakitic is said to have clarified to Mundo Deportivo that he would decide on his future in the coming weeks and that he doesn’t want to be treated like ‘a sack of potatoes’. Given the current situation around the world, it’s not surprising that the World Cup runner-up has decided to take his time before coming to a decision.

What Makes Rakitic An Attractive Target For Spurs?

The 32-year-old is one of the most experienced members of this Barcelona side, and his influence in the midfield area over the years is something that simply cannot be underplayed. Adept at picking up the ball from the defenders and identifying the next pass, Rakitic tends to offer an extremely dynamic presence in the core of the team. Capable of breaking up play with his positioning and timing, Rakitic provides an excellent variety of attributes in the central areas of the pitch, all of which will be supremely useful to Jose Mourinho at Tottenham.

How Did Rakitic’s La Liga Season Go This Time Around?

The Croatian international midfielder has been a regular feature of the Barcelona side for quite a while now, but this season has seen the trend taking a slight detour. The midfielder played in just 21 league appearances this season, with the majority of those outings coming off the bench in the late stages of the game.

BARCELONA, SPAIN – DECEMBER 18: Ivan Rakitic of FC Barcelona plays the ball during the Liga match between FC Barcelona and Real Madrid CF at Camp Nou on December 18, 2019 in Barcelona, Spain. (Photo by Alex Caparros/Getty Images)

The addition of players like Frenkie De Jong and Arthur Melo to the side have made things a lot more complicated in the central areas, and this led to the Croatian’s playing time being cut short drastically.

Having arrived at Barcelona during the 14/15 La Liga season, it’s interesting to note that this is the first-ever campaign where Rakitic has failed to make thirty appearances in the league. In fact, the Croatian has played in more than 30 league appearances for the last eight seasons in a row, excluding the current one of course. Moreover, this campaign has seen the midfielder provide the least number of goal contributions in his entire career, which just three assists and not a single goal to show for his efforts.

Is This The Right Time For Barcelona To Cash In On Rakitic?

Rakitic has been one of the Catalan side’s most loyal servants over the years, and it came as a surprise to see the Croatian not being given regular playing time this season. There’s no denying that the midfielder still has a lot left in his tank, and if the opportunity to prove himself isn’t going to be provided at Barcelona, then the best call would be to move to a club where his attributes are valued.

Footballing quality doesn’t fade; only form does. That’s why moving to the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium could be precisely what Rakitic needs to reinvigorate his flagging career, and Barcelona will do well to not stand in the way of the deal.

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