Luka Modric has indicated that his Croatia international colleague Ivan Rakitic's mooted move to Barcelona has already been wrapped up.
Widespread reports in the Spanish and Catalan media said Sevilla midfielder Rakitic, 26, would join Barca in a 20 million euro move, with Denis Suarez moving the other way on a season-long loan as part of the deal.
The transfer is expected to set in motion a chain of events that could see Cesc Fabregas leave Barcelona for Chelsea in a 36 million euro deal and playmaker Xavi Hernandez move on after over two decades at the club.
Speaking to Sport from Croatia's World Cup training camp in Brazil, Modric said he would have liked his club, Real Madrid, to sign Rakitic.
He added: "But in the end it could not be, and he has gone to Barca. I am very happy for him -- he deserves it. To go to a big club like Barca, with a global dimension, is an important step in his career."
Modric said Switzerland-born Rakitic, who impressed as Sevilla won the Europa League and finished fifth in the Primera Division, had shown he had what was needed to succeed at Barcelona.
"Everyone has seen this season what he is capable of doing," he said. "He is a great footballer who is improving. I am convinced that his performances in the coming seasons will be even better."
The part of playmaker Suarez, 20, in the deal has yet to be confirmed by either club, but his likely loan deal may include a set price to buy should he impress.