Ivan Rakitic is reportedly wanted by Bayern Munich, with the Bundesliga giants contemplating making a move for the Croatia international, who is also attracting Ligue 1 rivals Paris Saint-Germain and AS Monaco.
Vidal swapped Bayern for Barca earlier this summer in a deal worth around £32 million. The Blaugrana could replace the Chile international with Manchester United's Paul Pogba and could sell Rakitic to raise the funds needed to complete that deal, according to Benson.
Rakitic would be open to leaving the Camp Nou for one of the high-profile suitors reportedly intent on signing him. Among them, PSG would be prepared to pay £112.5 million to make a deal happen, per another report from Mundo Deportivo (h/t Richard Forrester of The Sun).
The hefty fee amounts to Rakitic's release clause at the Camp Nou. That would represent a major investment for Bayern, particularly for a midfielder who is 30.
Rakitic does have the skill to still be an asset for any of Europe's top clubs, though. He combines industry with flair, vision and guile, making him a tenacious box-to-box marauder, as well as a useful source of creativity and goals.
Even in what was a down campaign statistically for Rakitic, those qualities helped him score twice and provide five assists last season. He offered a timely reminder of his talent during the this summer's FIFA World Cup in Russia, where the ex-Sevilla man's resourceful displays helped the Blazers reach the final:
It's little wonder a club of Bayern's stature would be running the rule over Rakitic. However, Die Roten are hardly short of accomplished players in midfield.
Corentin Tolisso, Sebastian Rudy, Leon Goretzka and Thiago Alcantara are among manager Niko Kovac's best options. Keeping all of them won't be easy, though, with Real Madrid keen on Thiago, per Sky Germany (h/t Sky Sports).
If Thiago left, Bayern would struggle to find a replacement as capable as Rakitic. Yet Barca would surely be reluctant to let him go after seeing Andres Iniesta move to Japan and Paulinho return to China. Andre Gomes, meanwhile, joined Everton on a season-long loan.
It would make more sense for manager Ernesto Valverde to keep Rakitic in his squad alongside Vidal, Sergio Busquets, Philippe Coutinho and Denis Suarez.