Rakitic wants long-term Barca stay

Ivan Rakitic has confirmed he wants to stay at Barcelona ‘for many years’ amid speculation he could be on the verge of signing for Manchester City.

Reports in the Croatian press last week suggested the influential midfielder was considering departing the Camp Nou as he hasn’t started a La Liga fixture since the early December El Clasico clash but he has now dismissed these doubts.

"I want to sit down with the club because I want to renew my contract and stay here for many years," Rakitic told reporters in the mixed zone after the Blaugrana’s 1-0 Copa del Rey win at Real Sociedad.

"The manager knows that I'm not happy when I'm not on the pitch, he knows me better than anyone," he added. "I have to work really hard to be at my best and be able to show that to the manager. After that he makes the decisions.

"There are more than 20 guys in the squad. We all want to play and we have to understand [if we don't]. The manager knows I want to play every week and never miss a game.

"I'm not 15. [Luis Enrique] doesn't have to explain anything to me. The only solution is to work hard and take advantage of each opportunity he gives me. I'm calm because I'm working hard."

In an interview last week, the former Sevilla midfielder said he would ‘jump off a bridge’ for Luis Enrique, after rumours the pair had fallen out.

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