Barcelona midfielder Rafinha Alcantara agreed to a new contract with the Spanish giants on Monday that will keep him in Catalonia until 2020, per the official club website.
The 22-year-old is currently sidelined with a cruciate ligament injury and is likely to return as late as next season, yet Barca have ensured that once the famous red and blue shirt goes back on, it won’t come off.
There has been a €75 million release clause inserted in Rafinha’s new contract, which, depending on the star’s progress over the next five years, could prove very tempting for some of Europe’s big clubs.
Prior to his injury, Rafinha was breaking into manager Luis Enrique’s plans at Barcelona. His pacy, attacking style caused nightmares for La Liga defenders—making him the perfect late substitute for one of Lionel Messi, Luis Suarez or Neymar.
His style of play is very similar to the latter’s, with only his end product needing a bit of work before he’s uttered in the same breath as the mercurial trio.
In 24 appearances for Barca last term, Rafinha managed to chalk up just one goal and one assist—per WhoScored.com—but it’s clear that Enrique thinks a lot of him, as proved by this latest bumper contract.
The deal will be signed by both parties in the coming days, as the Brazilian continues his recovery at the Camp Nou.