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FC Barcelona News: 17 June 2014: Rakitic Joins Barcelona, Joan Gamper Opponent Announced

In a hectic day, FC Barcelona finally announced the signing of Ivan Rakitic on Monday, before following that news with an announcement that the club would contend the annual Joan Gamper Trophy against Leon

Buda Mendes

FC Barcelona and Sevilla FC have reached an agreement for the transfer of Ivan Rakitic. Ivan Rakitic will sign a contract with FC Barcelona for the next five seasons. Both clubs have also agreed for Denis Suárez to be loaned to the Andalusian club for the next two seasons.

The Joan Gamper Trophy match will be played on Monday August 18 against Club León de Guanajuato (Mexico), the side where former FCB man Rafa Márquez has played since 2012. This is the first time that the Mexican Closing 2014 and Opening 2013 champions have contested FC Barcelona’s annual trophy.

The 26 year old scored 12 goals for Sevilla last season. The star of the team, he was named man of the Match at the Europa League Final. Though he was born in Switzerland, he plays for Croatia and is currently in playing for them at the World Cup.

This Saturday 21 June will mark one month since Luis Enrique was presented as the new FC Barcelona first team manager. He and the club have been working hard ever since then to put together a squad for next season, and four new arrivals have already been announced, namely Ter Stegen, Deulofeu, Rafinha and Rakitic.

It was officially announced on Monday that Denis Suárez will go on loan to Sevilla FC for the next two seasons as part of the same operation that sees Ivan Rakitic join FC Barcelona. 20 year old Suárez came to FCB last season from Manchester City. He has a contract until 2017, and was one of the outstanding members of the Barça B team that just equalled the club’s best ever finish in the Second Division.

New Chelsea signing Cesc Fabregas has insisted he told Barcelona to let him leave, and they even tried to stop him departing. "I asked Barcelona to find a way for me to leave the club. The president tried to stop the sale, but I already had my mind made up," he told Cadena Cope.

Neymar will be looking to prove he is up there with all the great Brazil No 10s down the years - even Pele - by inspiring his side again over dangerous Mexico. How better to weave his name into the pantheon of greats than with a special ‘Brazilian’ free kick? Many of the most enduring memories of World Cups have been stunning goals from free kicks, not least by Brazilians.

Ronaldo, Portugal's star striker and FIFA's world player of the year, threatened a few times early in the match but remained largely ineffective. He had been doubtful before the match because of a left knee injury.

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