Manchester United are absolutely interested in signing Barcelona midfielder Frenkie de Jong this summer, according to Spanish publication Sport (page 9).
The Netherlands international was on the radar of the Red Devils in the summer of 2022. The club reached an agreement with the Blaugrana to sign him after prolonged negotiations.
However, the Dutchman rejected the proposal of leaving the club. He was not impressed with the Catalan giants trying to push him out of the exit door to balance their books.
It is now reported that the midfielder has doubts over his stay at Barcelona. The club were previously planning to extend his deal until June 2029 but it is now ‘impossible’ to renew.
The midfielder is projected to earn more than €20 million over the next few seasons. The Spanish club are open to selling him as they need a big-money exit to ease their financial issues.
Sport claim that United ‘absolutely’ maintain an interest in the player. The Red Devils alongside Chelsea would be willing to pay as much as €100m to secure the Dutchman’s services.
United unlikely to make huge outlay on De Jong
The Red Devils agreed to pay €65m plus €20m in add-ons for De Jong in 2022. They were also prepared to make him their highest earner, but a deal did not materialise in the end.
Sport claim that United could return for him at the end of the current campaign, but we are not convinced that the new management will pursue the signing of the Dutchman.
Sir Jim Ratcliffe and INEOS will take control of the footballing operations later this month. The focus will be on reducing the average age of the squad as well as the wage bill.
Aside from a high transfer fee, De Jong could demand a significant salary. He is currently on €406,000-a-week and could easily demand close to €500,000 weekly to join the club.
Such a move may not make sense for Ratcliffe. De Jong will be 27 by the summer. The focus could be on signing a young defensive midfielder with the potential to develop at United.
Benfica’s Joao Neves would be an ideal candidate for United, in our opinion.
Stats from Transfermarkt.com
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