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Eric Abidal talks Lautaro Martinez, Neymar and Ivan Rakitic’s Barcelona future

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The latest from the club’s sporting director

Internazionale v Hellas Verona - Italian Serie A Photo by Mattia Ozbot/Soccrates/Getty Images

Barcelona sporting director Eric Abidal is all over the front pages in Spain after giving extensive interviews where he has talked about a number of hot topics.

Abidal spoke to Mundo Deportivo about the club’s reported interest in Inter Milan forward Lautaro Martinez and the possibility of Neymar returning.

There has been plenty of speculation suggesting Barca are keen on Martinez and want to bring him to the Camp Nou as a replacement for Luis Suarez.

Here’s what Abidal said about the Inter Milan star.

“He is a complete player. I think he’s playing at a very good level. He is a player we are aware of and we know of his quality, but there are also other players with these same characteristics.”

Meanwhile, rumors about Neymar returning to the Camp Nou refuse to go away. The Brazilian wanted to leave PSG for Barca in the summer but the two clubs couldn’t agree a deal.

Abidal says Neymar’s quality and Barcelona past mean he remains an option for the club but also added such a move would be financially tough.

“A top player, who has a Barça philosophy and who is performing at a high level, will always be an option. From there, at the sports level we can make decisions, but the whole financial issue, there are things that you can reach and others that you cannot. The future will say. If it continues at this level, because the season is very long, I will not say that it will be our No.1 option but it’s still a clear option.”

And then over to Sport where Abidal said Rakitic has been warned he was not in their plans for the coming season: “Rakitic knows that it is a sporting decision. He must understand it. He had already been warned that he was out of our plans.”

Sport are also reporting on Sunday that Barca have received an offer from a Premier League club for Rakitic of around €15 million which is far below the club’s valuation.