Former ​Barcelona defender Eric Abidal​ will take over as the Spanish giants' sporting director from the 2018/19 season, ​the club have announced

The Frenchman will takeover from Roberto Fernández at the end of the month, signalling the end of the 56-year-old's reign - who parts ways with the Blaugrana after three years in the role.

Barcelona v Deportivo Alaves - La Liga

A statement released on Barcelona's website said: "FC Barcelona announces that Robert Fernández will not extend his contract as the football first team technical secretary which runs out on 30 June of this year. 

"The Club would like to thank Robert Fernández publicly for his commitment and dedication to FC Barcelona over the years and wishes him success in the future.

"As such, FC Barcelona also announces that Éric Abidal will take over the role as football first team technical secretary. His official presentation will be on Monday 18 July."

Abidal played with Barcelona for six-years during his decorated career, where he played a key role in securing four ​La Liga titles and two Champions League winners medals - made all the more incredible after battling liver disease in his last few years at the club. 

Abidal's role at the club will involve playing a key role in all transfer business, both incomings and outgoings in what is expected to be a busy summer transfer window for the Catalan giants. 

In other news, Barcelona have been li​nked with making a move for former midfielder Thiago Alcantara, where they are reported to have made ​Bayern Munich an offer of €50m plus defender Lucas Digne to get a deal across the line.