Reports: Ernesto Valverde names one player who is indispensable to Barcelona apart from Lionel Messi

Reports: Ernesto Valverde names one player who is indispensable to Barcelona apart from Lionel Messi

According to reports, it has been estimated that Spanish giants Barcelona will not part ways with midfielder Ivan Rakitic in the summer, as manager Ernesto Valverde feels that he is an indispensable part of the squad.

Previously, it was reported that Rakitic was a part of Barcelona’s transfer list for the summer, apart from other names like Philippe Coutinho, Malcom, Samuel Umtiti, Jean-Clair Todibo and Jasper Cillessen. The midfielder began his 2018-19 campaign well, after a good run in the 2018 FIFA World Cup where he reached the finals with the Croatian team. But as the season progressed, the 31-year-old went on to experience a dip in form.

Rakitic’s lack of form cost Barcelona severely in May as Barcelona lost two important games in quick succession – the UEFA Champions League semi-finals against Liverpool and the Copa del Rey finals against Valencia. That in turn, led to rumours that the former Sevilla man will be offloaded this summer.

But according to Catalunya Radio, a Spanish radio broadcasting agency, Valverde is keen not to let Rakitic leave this season. In their programme Club de la Mitjanit, they also added that the Barcelona boss is most interested in signing a central defender – Matthijs de Ligt from AFC Ajax.

The Catalan giants were in good touch throughout last season, as they made sure of defending their La Liga crown from 2017-18. They were also well on course to end the year with a treble, having reached the Copa del Rey finals and the Champions League finals. All of that changed within another couple of weeks as Lionel Messi and co. faced embarrassing defeats – at first against Liverpool in the second leg of the UCL semi-finals and then against Valencia in the Copa del Rey finals – and they had to end the year with a solitary La Liga triumph.

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