€25m-rated midfielder wants to stay in Spain amid Man United interest

Ivan Rakitic insists he is ‘pleased’ at the Blaugrana and hopes to be at the club next campaign despite repeatedly being linked with a move to Man United. The 32-year-old midfielder has played more than 300 games for Blaugrana since signing from Spanish rivals Sevilla in the summer of 2014.

Ivan has won four La Liga trophies and the Champions League during his spell at Barcelona and helped the national team reach the final of the last World Cup. Premier League giants Red Devils have long been linked with a move for Rakitic, but the midfielder says he intends to remain at the Camp Nou.

He said: ‘I’ve got used to it a bit. I’ve been here six years now, so I’ve had six years of this sort of thing. I have to try to understand it, to remember that football is not only a sport. There is a bit more to it. We know that we have to try to understand it you have a laugh about it sometimes.’

‘I’ve still got a contract when I sign a deal, I always intend to fulfil it, and if that cannot happen for any reason, then we’ll sit down together and talk about it. But for the moment, I am thrilled here, and I am thinking about other stuff.’

Man United have been linked with moves for several midfielders in recent months, with French World Cup-winner Paul Pogba potentially ready to leave the club. The Norwegian manager has identified Aston Villa star Jack Grealish and Leicester City attacker James Maddison as targets ahead of the summer transfer window.