Valverde uncertain over Mascherano
Barcelona head coach Ernesto Valverde is uncertain whether Javier Mascherano will remain at the Camp Nou beyond the January transfer window.
The versatile 33-year-old Argentina international has been with Barca for just over seven years, but has been strongly linked with a move to China in recent times.
There are players who are role models in the dressing room for one reason or another and he's one of those guys.Ernesto Valverde
Valverde clearly thinks very highly of the player, but admits that Mascherano could well opt for a change of scenery.
He told reporters: "The winter transfer market hasn't arrived yet, we wait for that to begin. And that's one of the questions we have to look at, but for the time being he's still ours and whenever he has played, he has played well.
"He's committed to the club, on and off field, and as long as he's here we don't need to think about anything else.
"On-field he brings a lot, as well as in the locker room. He's a veteran and everyone respects him, just the way he is.
"There are players who are role models in the dressing room for one reason or another and he's one of those guys."
Former Liverpool ace Mascherano has made just six La Liga appearances for Barca so far this season, but he remains an important player for his country, who was their final qualifier 3-1 in Ecuador to ensure they qualified for the World Cup finals next summer.
La Albiceleste are available at 250/1 to win the World Cup for a third time, with Brazil priced at 12121/1 and holders Germany 12121/1.
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