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FC Barcelona News: 21 August 2018; Players Back in Training, Ivan Rakitić Set to Stay

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Levante v Barcelona - La Liga Photo by Alex Caparros/Getty Images

Starting the week with training for Valladolid | FC Barcelona
Winners of their opening LaLiga encounter of the season at home to Alavés, the FC Barcelona first team were given two days off on Sunday and Monday. Their return to training came on Tuesday morning, in preparation for this weekend’s away game against Real Valladolid (Saturday, 10:15pm).

Rakitic stays as Barcelona improve his contract | Marca
Ivan Rakitic will not be leaving Barcelona this summer after the Catalan club agreed to offer him an improved contract effectively ending Paris Saint-Germain’s hopes of signing him. The Croat’s current contract runs out in 2021 but Barcelona are desperate to keep him and have therefore promised a more lucrative deal.

The first team’s photo shoot, from the inside | FC Barcelona
Ahead of the start of the La Liga season, Ernesto Valverde’s men enjoyed their official photo shoot for the 2018/19 season. One by one, the blaugranes posed for photos in a light-hearted atmosphere with lots of jokes, smiles, and laughter.

Barcelona’s Luis Suarez problem is only going to get worse | ESPN
Sadly, however, there’s another element, one that explains why Barcelona wanted to add Griezmann to a squad that were already La Liga and Copa del Rey winners. Last season, the normally prolific centre-forward had scored three times in 15 competitive matches by deep into November. The SOS signals were loud and clear. Worse, Suarez’s touch, his timing and his sharpness all looked like they’d deserted him. He was frustrated, confused and hard to watch.

Barcelona break La Liga record for consecutive opening day wins | ESPN
Barcelona’s 3-0 win over Alaves on Saturday was their 10th consecutive opening day win in La Liga, breaking a league record which had stood since 1943. Espanyol previously held the record with a run of nine straight wins on the first day of the Spanish top flight season between 1931 and 1943, either side of a break in play due to the Spanish Civil War.

Barca’s Alcacer prefers Betis move | Football Espana
Barcelona striker Paco Alcacer has interest from FC Porto and Borussia Dortmund but would prefer to join Real Betis, say reports in Spain. El Mundo Deportivo say all three clubs have made enquiries over a loan move for the out-of-favour striker, who was left out of Barca’s matchday squad for the clash with Alaves on Saturday.