Ivan Rakitic has explained he has given Barcelona his all during his time at the club and still has a lot left to give.
A report in Marca last month claimed that had been a mutual agreement between the midfielder and the Catalan club for a January transfer.
The Croatia international has been an integral part of the club’s midfielder for five years but has featured only sparingly this season and whilst no transfer away has been finalised, it is now said to be a formality.
Earlier this week, a report Movistar+ in Spain claimed Atletico Madrid would be willing to pay his €40m asking price, while Inter and Manchester United have also been linked with a January move.
“I understand and respect the decisions of a Coach, but I think I have given everything during these five and a half years that I have been here and what I want is to continue enjoying my football,” Rakitic told the Universo Valdano program.
“I enjoy playing. I trust my football. I'm 31, I'm not 38. I feel at my best, I think last year was the best year of my career, when I wanted to enjoy myself the most.
“It was after the World Cup, last season was the best for me because I was at my best and I'm working harder than ever. I've also set up a gym in my house and I'm crazy about the details. I love football.”
The Croatian international’s current deal at the Camp Nou runs through until the summer of 2021 although Barca signed midfielders Arturo Vidal and Arthur Melo last year and have landed Frenkie De Jong from Ajax this summer.
Carles Alena and Riqui Puig have also come through the club’s La Masia ranks to add further depth to the central midfield ranks, while Sergi Roberto can also be deployed there.