Barcelona boss Quique Setien has confirmed that Ivan Rakitic hasn’t asked to leave the club with Philippe Coutinho sailing in the same boat. The two players have been heavily linked with a move away from the club although Rakitic recently admitted that he would consider a future away from Camp Nou.
The Croatian midfielder has sternly admitted in a recent interview, that he’s unhappy at the way he has been treated over the last few months and wants to play only where he is valued. The same cannot be said for Philippe Coutinho with the Brazilian out on loan at Bayern Munich. He’s done relatively well with the Bavarian giants but hasn’t impressed the club enough for them to make the move permanent.
But while that might change once the season restarts, Barcelona boss Quique Setien went onto confirm that he hasn’t been told to sell the 2018 World Cup runner-up. Setien also admitted that Rakitic has not spoken to him about leaving the club or his lack of game-time over the last few months and that is something the club are not looking into at the moment.
"I have no information that Rakitic wants to leave the club and he has no transmitted that to me. And with me he has played a lot and can continue doing it. I am happy with his performance and have nothing to say. We have to wait to see what happens and if he wants to leave or not. And if I have to say it, the time will come," he told El Larguero on Thursday.
The Brazilian attacker, on the other hand, has been heavily linked with a move to the Premier League and Italy amongst others and agent Kia Joorabchian even admitted Coutinho’s interest in going back to England. However, while no move materialized in the winter window, the Brazilian’s future is reportedly up in the air at Barcelona with the club looking to fund a summer overhaul.
But Setien went onto admit that the Brazilian is still a Barcelona player and someone that the former Real Betis boss wants at the club. The Barcelona boss also added that he believes Coutinho will be at the club at the start of the next season but both manager and player still need to talk about the future.
“Coutinho? I like him very much. He is still a Barcelona player. You have to pay the clause or a transfer fee to Barca. He is a great footballer and I have always liked him, but it is too soon. There are things to deal with. I think he can be here at the beginning of next season. I don't know if he wants to come back or go away again, I have to talk to him to ask him. He is a great player, no doubt about it,” he added.