Manchester United reportedly think they can sign Frenkie de Jong for lower than Barcelona’s asking price. The Netherlands international previously played under Erik ten Hag at Ajax. And the pair could reunite at Old Trafford, particularly in the wake of Paul Pogba’s confirmed exit.
Manchester United announced on Wednesday that Pogba would be leaving the club after six underwhelming years.
He joins Nemanja Matic in heading out the door, with the Serbia international linked with a move to Roma – who are currently managed by old boss Jose Mourinho.
United’s interest in De Jong has become well-documented in recent weeks, despite the midfielder himself insisting he’d love to stay at Barcelona.
Now, The Sun say the Red Devils are confident they can land the 25-year-old on the cheap.
It’s stated Barcelona want a minimum of £67million to part ways with the player, who arrived from Ajax just three years ago.
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And he’s not the only player on United’s radar as they gear up for a summer spending spree.
In defence, Jurrien Timber is in their sights even if he’s indicated he’s more than happy to remain at Ajax at the current moment in time.
Pau Torres is also being looked at, 12 months after Ole Gunnar Solskjaer was interested in landing the Villarreal star.
A surprising move for N’Golo Kante is being considered, even if there are some concerns the Chelsea star is past his best.
And, up top, United are keeping tabs on Benfica striker Darwin Nunez.
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If De Jong does move to England, he’ll become the ninth player to play for both the Red Devils and Barcelona.
Henrik Larsson, Mark Hughes, Laurent Blanc, Jordi Cruyff, Gerard Pique, Victor Valdes, Zlatan Ibrahimovic and Alexis Sanchez have turned out for both teams.
And with the summer transfer window creeping closer, this looks like a saga that will roll on and on.
Speaking earlier in the week, when quizzed on his future, De Jong said: “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.”
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And he added: “What I’m saying, there is absolutely nothing of an agreement or anything official. At the moment there is no question of it at all.
“Not that I know of in any case. Or they must not have told me, but I don’t think so.”
United have a good record with Dutch players.
Though Donny van de Beek hasn’t set the world alight, like Memphis Depay before him, Daley Blind was a solid presence during his time at the club.
And United saw Ruud van Nistelrooy, Edwin van der Sar and Robin van Persie shine when Sir Alex Ferguson ruled the roost.