Barcelona have told Frenkie de Jong they would really like him to remain but provided that he agrees to a big pay cut and accepts a £6million settlement for his deferred wages. Despite being Manchester United’s top transfer goal for a lot of the summer, the Dutchman has began attracting serious interest from Chelsea with Thomas Tuchel keen so as to add to his midfield.
The Red Devils have publically pursued the Netherlands international all summer with Erik ten Hag eager to be reunited along with his former Ajax prodigy. United had a bid of around £72m accepted for the player’s services nevertheless the deal didn’t progress with the player reluctant to go away the Camp Nou as he was owed over £17m in wages by his current employers.
De Jong was also believed to be tired of a move to Old Trafford given the club’s current performance struggles. This eventually caught the eye of Chelsea who’re said to be prepared to match the 20-time Premier League winners’ bid for the midfielder. The London club could also be a more attractive proposition than their English rivals given their ability to supply the 25-year-old Champions League football.
Nonetheless, Barcelona have now reportedly made their play to maintain the 44-time capped international on the club. Sky report that the Catalan giants need to keep De Jong on the club but provided that he agrees to a considerable pay cut and accepts a settlement of £6m for his deferred wages.
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De Jong’s agents were said to be in Barcelona on Wednesday to try to discover a resolution on the player’s future. The La Liga runners-up are in a tricky financial spot after falling £1billion in debt and are facing a struggle to register their latest signings for the approaching season because of this.
The previous Ajax man is believed to be considered one of the very best earners on the club giving Joan Laporta further impetus to sort out his future. Reducing or removing the player’s wages is considered one of the quickest ways in which the club can start to unravel their top priority issues.
Barcelona boss Xavi has also confirmed he would really like to maintain the player on the club but appreciates the difficult financial situation.
“I do not send messages, I even have spoken with him,” the Spaniard said after their recent pre-season victory over Real Madrid. “I value him very much, for me he’s a fundamental footballer. But then there’s the economic situation and fair play. He can provide us rather a lot in central [midfield], I like him in that position.”
Reports on Wednesday night, meanwhile, claimed Chelsea were ‘confident’ of signing De Jong. Barcelona may not need to sell him in spite of everything to register their latest signings though, with claims coming out of Spain that the club have told Xavi they are going to have all of the fresh faces registered to play in La Liga by Saturday.