Barcelona midfielder Frenkie de Jong
Barcelona midfielder Frenkie de Jong.

Man United’s De Jong pursuit handed ‘boost’

Manchester United’s pursuit of Barcelona midfielder Frenkie de Jong has been handed a ‘boost’ as the Spanish side work on a deal to sign Ilkay Gundogan from Manchester City.

Barcelona are in negotiations to sign Gundogan on a free transfer this summer, in a transfer which could improve the Red Devils hopes of signing De Jong.


According to the Mirror, United fans should strap themselves in for another summer saga as Erik ten Hag again chases a deal for the Netherlands midfielder. The club failed in their lengthy pursuit of De Jong last summer despite agreeing a £56.2m fee with the Spanish side.

De Jong turned down a move to the Premier League and his preference is still to remain with Barcelona. However, the Catalans need to cut costs in a bid to meet La Liga’s financial rules, having been unable to register the new contracts signed by Gavi, Ronald Araujo and Marcos Alonso.

De Jong’s exit would bring in a large fee and remove the club’s highest-paid player from the wage bill, with the signing of Gundogan on a free transfer securing a cost-efficient replacement for the midfielder.

United’s focus for the summer transfer window is to sign a centre-forward and goalkeeper, but De Jong’s situation will continue to be monitored with Ten Hag keen to reunite with the former Ajax midfielder at Old Trafford.

The Red Devils improved their midfield depth with the loan signing of Marcel Sabitzer in January, though no option to buy was included in the deal. Scott McTominay has also been linked with an exit after struggling for first-team football this season.

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