Manchester United have reportedly submitted a bid totalling €80 million as they look to lure Frenkie de Jong to Old Trafford.
The Dutchman has been one of United’s primary transfer targets ever since Erik ten Hag was appointed as Manchester United’s new permanent manager last month, the pair having enjoyed an excellent spell working together at Ajax.
De Jong was a key component in Ajax’s run to the Champions League semi-finals back in 2018/19, with the midfielder’s form earning him his a big-money move to Barcelona.
The 25-year-old has gone on to make 139 appearances for the Blaugrana, scoring 13 goals and providing 17 assists, though despite his regular role, he appears to be a player that Barcelona are willing to cash in on in order to raise much-needed funds as the cash-strapped club continue their own rebuild.
Despite the opportunity of teaming up with his former Ajax boss at Old Trafford, the Netherlands international has made no secret of his desire to stay in Catalonia in recent weeks, though according to Marca, the new Manchester United boss has been working to ‘convince’ the player to reunite with him in the Premier League, telling De Jong that ‘the whole game will revolve around him’ as he looks to rebuild United’s fortunes.
It seems as though Ten Hag’s efforts, as well as Barcelona’s willingness to do business, are starting to have an effect on the midfielder, with De Jong ‘increasingly clear that his future is away from the club’, with United said to have now gone in with an official bid.
That bid is said to be worth €60m (£51m) plus a further €20m (£17m) in add ons, a deal that would see Barcelona potentially recoup all of the €75m they paid for him back in 2019.
As for United, an initial outlay of £51m would represent decent business for a player of De Jong’s quality, especially in an area of the pitch in desperate need of strengthening given the departures of Nemanja Matic, Paul Pogba, Juan Mata and Jesse Lingard.
At present, United only have Scott McTominay and Fred as recognised midfielders, while De Jong’s former Ajax teammate Donny van de Beek is set to return from his underwhelming loan spell at Everton.
United have also been linked with adding a more defence-minded midfielder to their ranks, with PSV’s Ibrahim Sangare the latest name linked.
The club are also thought to be keen on signing a forward and a centre-back, though could be pipped to the signing of Darwin Nunez by rivals, Liverpool.