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Rakitic returns to Sevilla following agreement with Barcelona

Seville, Spain, Sep 1 (efe-epa).- Croatia midfielder Ivan Rakitic has ended his six season spell with Barcelona and is returning to Sevilla FC with a contract until 2024.

“Sevilla FC and FC Barcelona have reached an agreement for the transfer of midfielder Iván Rakitic, who will return to the club for a second spell after his first spell at the club between January 2011 and June 2014,” Sevilla said in a club statement.

“The Croatian international, who has 105 caps, returns to the club six years after making the move to the Catalan side, just after lifting the Europa League trophy in Turin. He signs on a four-year deal, until 30th June 2024.”

Barcelona said Sevilla would pay 1.5 million euros ($1.8M) for the transfer of the 32-year-old as well as 9 million euros in variables.

Barça said Rakitic was the foreign player with fourth most appearances for the LaLiga side, after Lionel Messi, Dani Alves and Javier Mascherano.

In his previous stint with Sevilla, Rakitic played 149 matches, scoring 32 goals and setting up 41 assists.

For Barcelona, he made 310 appearances, in which he scored 35 goals and provided 42 assists, winning the Spanish league four times and the Champions League once.

Sevilla went on to win the Europa League this year, beating Inter Milan in the final under the management of Julen Lopetegui.

Barcelona has recently made headlines for the wrong reasons. They were humiliatingly dumped from the Champion League quarterfinals, losing 8-2 to Bayern Munich.

It preceded a shake up that saw a change in management while the board also looked to offload a number of players to free up cash. The team’s star player Messi informed the leadership he wanted to leave and did not turn up to the team’s first training session on Monday.EFE-EPA

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