PSG Reportedly Told Adrien Rabiot to Join Barcelona After Contract Frustrations

Matt JonesFeatured ColumnistNovember 6, 2018

Adrien Rabiot of Paris Saint-Germain during the UEFA Champions League group C match between Paris St Germain and SSC Napoli at the Parc des Princes on October 24, 2018 in Paris, France(Photo by VI Images via Getty Images)
VI-Images/Getty Images

Paris Saint-Germain reportedly told midfielder Adrien Rabiot to go and sign for Barcelona after they became frustrated with the player during contract negotiations.

According to Paris United (h/t Sport), there was tension between the club's sporting director Antero Henrique and Rabiot's camp during talks in the summer.

It's said that after growing annoyed at the lack of progress made over an extension, Henrique told Rabiot's representatives he should move to Barcelona if he could agree a deal. The Blaugrana have long been linked with the midfielder, whose terms at the Parc des Princes run out at the end of this campaign.

The France international is rated as one of the most talented playmakers in Ligue 1 and has blossomed into a key man for PSG after moving to the club's academy in 2010.

However, with little progress made between the player and club regarding an extension and angst reported, his stint in the French capital may be close to an end.

Rabiot's professionalism has been questioned of late too. Per Jonathan Johnson of ESPN FC, he was left out of the starting XI for the game against Marseille in October after he failed to turn up to a pre-match meeting on time.

As French football journalist Jeremy Smith noted, prior to that in the UEFA Champions League clash with Napoli, the midfielder didn't show a large amount of defensive application:

Jeremy Smith @jeremysmith98

Good question - have Rabiot and Mbappe been benched because of their (total lack of) defensive work in midweek? (If so, Neymar could have been benched too, but presumably the only matches he misses are when he asks for time off to go to the beach.) https://t.co/ERtJ5YKXqW

Even so, there are reasons a team of Barcelona's calibre have been tipped as possible suitors.

The PSG man is a unique player, as he blends elegance and technical ability with a number of physical qualities. Rabiot can win the ball back, skip by a challenge and open up a game with a burst forward.

Throughout his time at PSG, he's become renowned for using possession well too. This season, he's been one of the best distributors in French football:

WhoScored.com @WhoScored

Adrien Rabiot: Has made more accurate passes (619) than any other player in Ligue 1 this season For more player stats -- https://t.co/nUqlEYrdCq https://t.co/eNU3kP9ZkB

While it would be frustrating for PSG to lose Rabiot for nothing at the end of the season or for a knockdown price in January, what'll also be concerning for manager Thomas Tuchel is the lack of midfield options his departure would leave the team with.

At the moment, Rabiot and Marco Verratti tend to line up together in midfield. On occasion, they have four attack-minded players ahead of them, while Marquinhos and Lassana Diarra have also been drafted in at times to add more steel to this facet of the team.

Tom Williams of Agence France-Presse said he's unsure of how PSG fare in midfield in comparison to other elite sides:

Tom Williams @tomwfootball

Draw a fair result, but PSG's Champions League shortcomings on show again. Still too dependent on individuals. Not convinced Verratti and Rabiot can cut it against top three-man midfields. Rare no-show from Mbappe.

If Rabiot were to join Barcelona, he'd face major competition for his place. Arthur has excelled since his arrival in the summer, while Ivan Rakitic, Philippe Coutinho and Arturo Vidal are also in contention for spots in advanced midfield berths.

Even so, you suspect Rabiot would jump at the chance to move to the Camp Nou, and according to the initial report, PSG wouldn't be too concerned about losing him to the La Liga side.