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Barcelona initially tried to put Ivan Rakitic up for sale for 20 million euros one month ago, but a lack of suitors has caused the club to halve their asking price.    Sevilla are one of the teams that has been linked with the 32-year-old as they look to bring him back to the club where he played between 2011 and 2014.  Mundo Deportivo report that Rakitic, who has one year left on his contract, is now free to leave Barcelona for a fee of 10 million euros.  The Blaugrana hope that Sevilla will step forward with an offer after lowering their demands, however this couldn’t be further from the truth at this moment in time.  Sevilla will not budge from their initial position: they want Rakitic, but they don’t want to pay a fee that they deem to be excessive.  That is to say that for a player who is no longer performing at the same level as before and is going to sign his last big contract, the Andalusian club don’t want to pay more than four or five million euros, the same fee paid for Fernando Reges last year, for instance.  Moreover, in order to compensate Rakitic for the salary reduction he knows he would have to take, the new contract would last until 2024.    Another factor to remember is that Valencia have put Dani Parejo up for sale, a player Sevilla sporting director Monchi is a big fan of.  Now 31 and with a salary that is at the top of Sevilla’s wage scale, he would be a signing that could provide an instant injection of quality into Julen Lopetegui’s side.  Only one of Parejo or Rakitic would arrive at the Estadio Ramon Sanchez-Pizjuan, though.  Therefore, Rakitic and Barcelona have come up against a competitor.  Another option that is on the table is for the Croatian to drag his feet and see out the next 12 months in Catalonia before having the freedom to choose his next team, with Sevilla also happy to welcome him back on a free in the summer of 2021.  As always, the final word is with Rakitic, who is waiting for a message from his great friend Monchi.

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