According to latest reports, Manchester United have submitted an opening bid to facilitate a potential move for Barcelona midfield general Frenkie de Jong this summer. Manager Erik ten Hag is very keen to bring the Dutch midfielder to Old Trafford this summer as part of his rebuilding process.
The Red Devils have been weighing up a move for the 25-year-old. The Dutchman has grown unsettled at Camp Nou this season and could be tempted to reunite with Erik Ten Hag. Barcelona’s financial difficulties could further help to facilitate the transfer, who value the player at €85 million.
It was reported last week that United have initiated talks with the Blaugranes regarding a move for De Jong. Italian transfer expert Fabrizio Romano confirmed the news. The Red Devils believe that an understanding with Barcelona will not be a problem but, they need to effectively convince the player to make the switch.
De Jong himself is sceptical of a move to United. He has turned down transfer rumours and has laid down his intention to continue playing in Spain. The former Ajax midfielder may turn down a move to United due to the lack of Champions League football.
Now, according to Marca (via The Express), Manchester United have submitted an official bid to sign Frenkie de Jong this summer. The Red Devils have placed an offer in the region of £68.3million, which includes £51.2m (€60m) fixed transfer fee, plus £17m (€20m) in performance related bonuses.
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The Catalan club are seriously considering the proposal as the total figure of the deal is close to their valuation for the player. Moreover, the Mundo Deportivo (via Metro) report the Dutchman’s agent is set to travel to Barcelona in the next 48 hours to discuss a move with the club.
Following a 4-1 win against Belgium, Netherlands manager Louis Van Gaal picked the Dutchman out specifically for praise too. Van Gaal said:
“It is always a collective victory. There are people who can excel in the collective, which is great of course. There are always stars, but in these matches it was again Frenkie de Jong and Steven Bergwijn. It was unbelievable how those two played,”
“If everyone does what they are supposed to do, then in every position on the pitch we have one player extra. It also has to do with the opponent – every opponent plays differently. And I adjusted to Belgium too. I adapted my midfield. And my midfield won the game today.”
There are three key factors that support the Red Devils for a possible transfer of De Jong to Old Trafford.:
1. Barca’s Financial Situation:
According to the reports in Spain, FC Barcelona are on the verge of a financial collapse. The 2015 CL winners currently have a wage bill that exceeds the La Liga limit by €140 million. They are looking to sell multiple players this summer. Frenkie De Jong is one of the highest earners at the club, and also one of the most highly valued midfielders in the world. Barcelona will look to maximize a transfer fee and clear some space on their wage bill.
2. Primary Role at United:
At Barcelona, Sergio Busquets has remained the central focus in the midfield. Their system is engineered to suit the Spaniard’s strengths. The trade-off is that De Jong has never managed to excel in his natural position since signing in 2019. The meteoric rise of youngsters like Gavi and Pedri as well as new signings like Franck Kessie could further push the Dutchman out.
De Jong is guaranteed to receive more prominence at Old Trafford. With the departure of Nemanja Matic, the Red Devils have a gaping hole in their midfield. The Dutch midfielder has the opportunity to play in his natural role, and headline United’s rebuild.
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3. Reunion With Erik ten Hag:
De Jong enjoyed one of his best individual seasons under Ten Hag in 2019. He was effectively deployed in a double pivot, or as a libero in the defence. The 25-year-old could be tempted to join hands with his former mentor at Old Trafford again. Could the chance to work with Ten Hag outweigh missing out on Champions League football?
Should Manchester United sign Frenkie De Jong? Is he worth the €85m valuation? Let us know in the comments.
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