Frenkie de Jong is a name that has been written about and plastered over this summer window so far, with the player being Erik ten Hag’s No.1 target to fill the gaping hole left in the squad.
After Paul Pogba and Nemanja Matic both left the club for free this summer, there has been a significant lack of personnel left behind in the midfield department, with Scott McTominay and Fred being the only two non-attacking midfielders who have started regularly for the club.
James Garner has re-joined the squad after two successful loan spells at Nottingham Forest, and although the signing of Lisandro Martinez could lift some pressure off the aforementioned two, it is very obvious that the club need more reinforcements in that area.
Erik ten Hag is keen to sign Frenkie de Jong for the club after being the man who gave him his first big break in football back in 2018 at Ajax as part of that wonderful Champions League side.
The new Manchester United boss is keen to build his side around De Jong due to his incredible on the ball ability and general dictatorial brilliance with regards to controlling the tempo of a football match.
Although a fee has reportedly been agreed between both Manchester United and Barcelona, the player is yet to accept the move.
When questioned on the player after Barcelona’s victory over Real Madrid in the United States, Xavi was keen to make it known that he places a lot of “value” on De Jong.
"I don't send messages, I have spoken with him," said the Barcelona boss. "I value him very much, for me he is a fundamental footballer.”
Barcelona’s financial troubles in recent years have been incredibly well documented, and Xavi does recognise the fact that the player may have to move on from the club due to this.
"But then there is the economic situation and fair play. He can give us a lot in central [midfield], I like him in that position."
Barcelona have recently purchased Raphinha from Leeds United for a fee of €58m (£49m) with add-ons of €9m, and similarly signed Robert Lewandowski from Bayern Munich for €50 million, signalling that they expect a large influx of cash to be deposited during the near future.
Although he publicly supports the player, Xavi is reportedly intending to try and persuade De Jong against wanting to stay at the club – the player has been playing at centre-back in recent fixtures while Barcelona try and secure a deal for Frenchman Jules Kounde, who is also facing interest from Chelsea.
Barcelona are yet to make an offer for Jules Kounde due to the risk of not being able to register signings, and will try to push through various departures, including Frenkie de Jong, to be able to present an offer close to that of #Chelsea's.— Absolute Chelsea (@AbsoluteChelsea) July 23, 2022
[via @tjuanmarti / @samuelsonsilva]
Chelsea are also said to be interested in the signing of Frenkie de Jong, however are yet to launch any sort of bid for the player.
🗞 Chelsea have been interested in Frenkie de Jong for weeks, but they know #mufc have an agreement with Barcelona, and that Frenkie as of today has no plans to leave Spain - they will not submit offers until they know he has different ideas. [@FabrizioRomano, @caughtoffside]— Utd District (@UtdDistrict) July 20, 2022
Manchester United are set to land back in Manchester on Sunday evening after rounding up their tour in Australia and Bangkok, which consisted of four fixtures.
The club initially beat Liverpool 4-0 in Thailand before jetting off to play two games in Melbourne, defeating Melbourne Victory 4-1 and Crystal Palace 3-1.
The side then flew to Perth to face Aston Villa, and despite a Jadon Sancho finish and Matty Cash own-goal, two goals in the second half from the Birmingham side saw Erik ten Hag’s winning streak come to an end.
Featured Image Credit: Alamy
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