Soccer-Barca tasked with convincing sought-after Thiago to stay (Reuters)

By Iain Rogers MADRID, June 19 (Reuters) – Barcelona face a delicate balancing act to convince sought-after Spain Under-21 playmaker Thiago Alcantara that his long-term future lies with the club and he can play a leading role with the La Liga champions next season. The 22-year-old Barca academy graduate, whose contract runs until June 2015, is being groomed as the successor to Xavi in central midfield but is said to be frustrated at a lack of playing time and has attracted the attention of some of Europe’s wealthiest clubs. Valued at 22 million euros ($29.5 million) on website transfermarkt. …

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