The name of Frenkie de Jong seemed almost forgotten by Manchester United fans after a painful transfer saga appeared to have ended in a stalemate, with the Red Devils turning to Real Madrid’s Casemiro instead.
De Jong was reportedly Erik ten Hag’s top priority signing this summer, having worked with him before at Ajax.
And a new report from Sport in Spain says that United are still negotiating with the Dutchman’s agents and that there is still a good chance that he will join United in this window.
The outlet claims that agent Ali Dursun has flown in to Barcelona for a “summit meeting” with the Blaugrana, but nothing has changed on either side.
The club is still insisting that De Jong slashes his salary by 40% to stay at the Camp Nou and the player is refusing to do so, having already foregone a huge €17 million chunk of wages during the pandemic, which are still owed to him.
“Barça need to get rid of the Dutchman’s contract to tackle the end of the market with guarantees,” Sport says.
“Everything is possible.
“The De Jong operation is absolutely strategic for Barça as he is one of the players with the highest salary in the squad.
“The Blaugrana club has him, but with conditions and they will try to reach an agreement with his agents in the long term.
“If this is not possible, the club will try to open the option of a transfer with Chelsea and Manchester United on the lookout for what may happen.
“[Barcelona] are aware that the footballer’s environment has been negotiating in recent days with United and, from the Netherlands, it has been confirmed that there are serious options that he could end up accepting in the last days of the market,” Sport claims.
British outlets such as The Athletic are adamant that United have closed a door on the De Jong saga and that outlet is usually more reliable than Sport. But the Catalan press do seem equally convinced that it’s not all over until the lady sings.
If the United board are really willing to fund the purchase of two of the world’s best midfielders in one window, United could start to be considered serious contenders again for the first time in years.
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