Villarreal president on Barcelona’s Rakitic: ‘If he wants to come to Villarreal, we are here’

Villareal president Fernando Roig has opened the door to signing Barcelona midfielder Ivan Rakitic this summer: “I like him a lot.”

Earlier this month, the front page of Seville-based Estadio Deportivo, as cited by Diario Sport, reports how it is a case of ‘Sevilla or nothing’ for the central midfielder, who captained the club to the 2014 Europa League title.

The Croatian international’s deal runs out at the Camp Nou in the summer of 2021 and his preference is for a return to the Andalusian club, whom he captained to the Europa League title in 2014.

The player’s wife is a native of Seville – the two met when he joined the club from Schalke – and he is said to be keen to return the city.

“I like him a lot as a footballer, if he wants to come to Villarreal, we are here,” Roig told Cadena Cope’s El Partidazo programme, as cited by Diario Sport.

The 31-year-old has clocked up 298 appearances for Barcelona since his switch from Seville in the summer of 2014 and he has won a plethora of trophies – including four La Liga titles, four Copa del Rey trophies and the 2015 Champions League title.

The Croat has been consistently linked with a move away from the Camp Nou this season, despite the player himself previously stating that he wished to remain at the club.

In a wide-ranging interview, Roig also made comment on the possible return of La Liga and completing the 2019/20 campaign.

“I think we have to finish the league,” he added. “I do not think there is a club interested in not playing.”

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