Barcelona midfielder Frenkie de Jong has given Manchester United a final answer on whether he will be securing a transfer this summer after Erik ten Hag reportedly reignited his interest in the former Ajax star.
Ten Hag was desperate for Man Utd to land De Jong last summer. It took several rounds of negotiations before Man Utd chiefs managed to reach an agreement with their Barca counterparts. However, De Jong refused Man Utd’s contract offer and due to this the transfer agreement eventually expired.
The Dutchman told Man Utd that he had no plans to join them as he was happy at Barca.
De Jong continues to be an important player for Barca boss Xavi, having played in 32 games across all competitions so far this season.
Despite this, and De Jong’s previous rejection of them, Man Utd are planning to go back in for him once the next transfer window opens.
According to a report from talkSPORT earlier this month, the 25-year-old has completed a U-turn on his future and is now open to an Old Trafford switch. They claim two factors are at play, with De Jong being impressed by the progress made under Ten Hag, while he also wants to form a midfield partnership with Casemiro.
However, talkSPORT’s information appears to be wide of the mark. During an interview with RAC1, De Jong was asked about whether he would be reuniting with Ten Hag at Man Utd this summer. He responded (via Fabrizio Romano): “I’m very calm here, very happy at Barca. I want to stay at Barcelona for many more years.”
It looks like De Jong will once again push back Man Utd’s advances in the summer. Perhaps after this happens Ten Hag will finally get the message and look at alternative midfield solutions.
Ten Hag will have to pursue other midfielders
The manager wants a top-class midfielder who can partner Casemiro in the long run. A permanent deal for loanee Marcel Sabizter is one option, but that will only happen if the 28-year-old shines over the next few months.
Man Utd are also looking at midfielders from the German Bundesliga and Brighton. As per the Daily Mail, Ten Hag is eager to land Eintracht Frankfurt’s Daichi Kamada.
The 26-year-old will become a free agent at the end of June and has been preparing to join Borussia Dortmund. However, Ten Hag has supposedly made contact with Kamada to try and torpedo that move.
Should Kamada reject Man Utd’s approach, then Brighton star Alexis Mac Allister could be targeted instead. He has enjoyed a brilliant year with both Brighton and Argentina and seems ready to take the next step in his career.
The only trouble is that he will not come cheap. Brighton are great at negotiating player sales, as shown by the money they brought in for Ben White and Marc Cucurella. As such, it would likely take a bid worth £60-70m to get the Seagulls to sell Mac Allister.
Meanwhile, Man Utd have added a Chelsea player to their shortlist, though Todd Boehly will not let him go on the cheap.
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