Rakitic would prefer Barca stay

Ivan Rakitic looks set for the Barcelona exit door.

Ivan Rakitic says he would ideally like to remain at Barcelona but he may have to reconsider his future if his playing time does not increase.

Croatia international Rakitic has been an integral part of the Barca squad ever since moving to Camp Nou from Sevilla in 2014 and he has gone on to win 13 major honours during his time in Catalonia.

However, the 31-year-old has seen his playing time decrease significantly this season and he made just his second La Liga start of the campaign during Barca’s 1-0 victory at Atletico Madrid on Sunday.

Indeed, that was also the first time Rakitic has played the full 90 minutes in the Spanish top flight this term and there has been increasing speculation that he could leave the club during the January transfer window in search of more game-time elsewhere.

The former Schalke player has conceded he may have to consider his position with Barca if his playing situation doesn’t improve, although his preference would be to remain with Ernesto Valverde’s side.

“I do not understand the situation because I want to play. If I can play, there is no better place than Barca,” Rakitic told Marca. “I want to enjoy every day, and if it can be here, much better.”

Rakitic’s future could depend on how much he features for the Blaugrana over the next couple of weeks, with the club facing important games against the likes of Real Madrid, Real Sociedad and Inter Milan before the Christmas break.