BARCELONA midfielder Ivan Rakitic is looking increasingly set for a January exit and Manchester United are formulating a bid.
Reports in Spain name the Red Devils and Inter Milan as the two sides who have already enquired about a deal.
A vital part of Barcelona’s success since arriving in 2014, the 31-year-old has been withdrawn from regular first-team action this season.
The next generation of Blaugrana midfielder, namely Arthur and Frenkie de Jong, continue to impress coach Ernesto Valverde – relegating Rakitic to just two starts all season.
According to Sport, the reigning La Liga champions want £35million for the Croatian international.
A January deal is preferred as Rakitic’s contract runs out in 2021 and, once he gets to within a year of being a free agent, his market value will decrease.
For the player, a final long-term project of his esteemed career is the target.
Both United and Inter have discussed a transfer with Barcelona.
The Italian club snatched long-term Old Trafford target Diego Godin in the summer with the defender at a similar stage of his career as Rakitic.
Last week, Rakitic revealed his concerns over his playing time at the Camp Nou, suggesting his lack of game time could draw an end to his spell at the club.
He told reporters: “I don’t know what will come next.
“It’s been tough because I want to play and I’ve just not been part of the team.
“I will do my best to try to change the situation. I have two years left on my contract and there is no better place to play than Barcelona, the best club in the world.
“But I need to play and not only enjoy walks around the city and the beach.”
United may not be short of experience in midfield but Juan Mata and Nemanja Matic are both out of contract in the summer, while Fred has been a £52m flop and Paul Pogba wants out.