Ivan Rakitic turns 28 on Thursday / FCB

Ivan Rakitic joined FC Barcelona in the summer of 2014 and has gone on to play an important part in the club’s success.

The Croatian midfielder is a central figure in Luis Enrique’s side, having been the most used player during the manager’s first 100 matches in charge. Seeing as it is his 28th birthday, here are some interesting facts about Rakitic’s time with the club so far.

Closing in on first century. In under two seasons, Rakitic is already on 95 games for Barça, with 77 wins under his belt.

44 matches this season. Last campaign saw the Croatian play 51 matches and is on course to surpass that total this time around.

Fourth most featured. Such is his important in the side, Rakitic is the fourth most used player in the first team. Only Luis Suarez (3,913 minutes), Sergio Busquets (3,412) and Javier Mascherano (3,335), have had more playing time this season than Rakitic (3,312).

Goals on the board. As well as playing a creative role, he has managed to notch in six goals this season.

Only the trident have scored more. Over the course of his time at the club, his 14 goals make him the highest scorer after the notorious trio of Suarez, Messi and Neymar Jr.

Clean sweep of trophies. Winning the Champions League, La Liga, Copa del Rey, European Super Cup and Club World Cup in his first season at Barcelona adds to the Europa League, German Cup and Swiss Cup he had won earlier in his career.

Recognition from his homeland. In 2015, Rakitic was named Best Croatian Sportsman due to his incredible displays for club and country.

Big in Japan. Rakitic made plenty of friends during Barça’s Club World Cup campaign in Japan, mainly due to his resemblance to local cartoon hero Son Goku.

Rakitic, Son Goku of FC Barcelona by fcbarcelona

Happy 28th birthday Ivan Rakitic by fcbarcelona
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