Manchester United 'make their first bid for Barcelona's Frenkie de Jong'

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Manchester United ‘make their first bid for Barcelona’s Frenkie de Jong worth £51m guaranteed and another £17m in add-ons’ with Erik ten Hag telling his former Ajax player that his new-look side will revolve around him

  • Barcelona are said to be looking to sell the Dutchman this summer to raise funds
  • Erik ten Hag is looking to refresh Manchester United’s midfield this summer
  • Paul Pogba and Nemanja Matic have already announced their departures

Manchester United have reportedly made their first offer for Barcelona’s Frenkie de Jong as they look to rebuild their side under Erik ten Hag this summer. 

De Jong, known to Ten Hag from their shared Ajax days, is said to be one of a number of players Barcelona are willing to let go this summer in view of bringing new faces in. 

According to Marca, Manchester United have made their first move in trying to prise the midfielder away from Barcelona.

Having played under him at Ajax, the Dutch star is reportedly top of Erik ten Hag's transfer list

Having played under him at Ajax, the Dutch star is reportedly top of Erik ten Hag’s transfer list

Manchester United have reportedly offered the Spanish giants £51m plus £17m in potential add-ons, an offer the Catalans are said to be mulling over. 

It has been reported that Ten Hag has spoken to his former player about his role in the United set up, with the Dutchman assuring his fellow countryman that he will be the figurehead in midfield, with the play running through him.

Ten Hag is looking to rebuild Manchester United’s midfield this summer following a number of departures including Paul Pogba and Nemanja Matic.  

Frenkie de Jong formed a key part of the Ajax side that reached the semi-finals of the Champions League in 2019

Frenkie de Jong formed a key part of the Ajax side that reached the semi-finals of the Champions League in 2019

The Spanish publication note that while away on international duty with the Netherlands, De Jong said that he was more comfortable with the Dutch style of play than he was at Barcelona. 

It is unclear what the exact specifics of this means, but it has been suggested that De Jong’s favoured position of playing in the deeper midfield role is being blocked by Barcelona stalwart Sergio Busquets. 

It has been suggested that United would offer a style of play more suited to that favoured by De Jong than his current club. 

Despite his reported statement about his preferred style of play, De Jong has been on the record since the end of the season in saying that his preferred option would be to stay with Barcelona.      

Barcelona are looking to rebuild their squad under manager Xavi Hernandez (centre)

Barcelona are looking to rebuild their squad under manager Xavi Hernandez (centre)

‘I prefer to stay with Barcelona,’ De Jong told ESPN.

‘Barcelona is just my dream club. Also from a young age. I just said it too. I’ve never regretted my choice despite the fact that I had hoped for more in terms of prizes than I’ve achieved so far. But I have never regretted my choice.’

However, Barcelona’s financial situation and their desire to bring players in, namely Robert Lewandowski, means they need to clear players off their bloated wage bill. 

It was reported back in May that Barcelona only viewed six players as unsellable, with De Jong not considered among that select group. 

The Dutchman is on the record as saying he wishes to remain with Barcelona this summer

The Dutchman is on the record as saying he wishes to remain with Barcelona this summer

De Jong, who Marca report has a contract worth around £34m, is thought to be one of those players that Barcelona see as expendable in exchange for capital to invest elsewhere. 

The money Barcelona would receive for De Jong would allow them to enter into the market for other targets with names such as Lewandowski and Leeds United’s Raphinha being mooted. 

Barcelona’s financial situation means that such offers must be considered, with their balance sheet still a considerable worry for the club. They are still hamstrung by the one in four rule, which means they can only spend one million for every four they save. 

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