Barcelona star gives ‘private’ verdict on potential €80m summer transfer to Man Utd

Joe Williams
Man Utd target Frenkie de Jong poses for a photo

Barcelona midfielder Frenkie de Jong has indicated that he would be interested in a transfer to Man Utd this summer, according to reports.

The Netherlands international moved to Barcelona from Eredivisie giants Ajax in July 2019 for €75m following his brilliant performances in the heart of their midfield.

He hasn’t lit up the Camp Nou in the way many had hoped but he has still been an important part of Xavi’s side this season, playing 47 times in all competitions.

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De Jong was part of Erik ten Hag’s Ajax side who reached the Champions League semi-finals in 2019 before eventually being knocked out by Premier League outfit Tottenham.

Ten Hag is now the new manager at Man Utd and there is strong speculation that he wants to make De Jong the ‘reference’ point in midfield for the Red Devils next campaign.

And now The Athletic have an update on United’s ‘main focus’ this summer ‘with sources saying the player has given private indication a move to Old Trafford appeals’.

There had been several reports suggesting that De Jong was reluctant to move to Man Utd because of the lack of Champions League football and recent disharmony in the dressing room.

But despite other reports insisting that the Red Devils were happy to meet Barcelona’s demands for De Jong, The Athletic add that it’s the fee that is ‘pausing the move’.

It is understood that ‘negotiations are underway’ but that Man Utd ‘are resistant though to instantly paying what Barcelona demand, given the financial difficulties at the Nou Camp, and do not wish to be Barcelona’s bailout’.

The Athletic continues:

‘For Ten Hag’s first summer however, it would be prudent to deliver a marquee player in a key area of the pitch — even at a significant cost. There is a different kind of price for doing deals later, in terms of manager satisfaction and pre-season preparations. Joel Glazer’s role in United’s decision-making is well-known and remains the case.’

Netherlands boss Louis van Gaal, who managed Man Utd between 2014 and 2016, recently claimed that De Jong is worth €112m.

Van Gaal told reporters: “Frenkie de Jong does bring an extra quality, of course. That is why he is also worth 112 million.”