Manchester United may need reason to be concerned of their chase to sign Frenkie de Jong this summer. Chelsea have also registered an interest within the Barcelona star this transfer window.
United have been attempting to thrash out a deal for De Jong but Barcelona have been unwilling to comply up to now, though fees are at a critical stage.
Nevertheless, whether the player actually desires to move to Old Trafford is yet to be decided after it emerged that he is just not willing to take a pay cut. And there’s further bad news after reports broke that Chelsea want to snap up the midfielder as well.
The Blues have yet to make a signing this summer – the one top-six team to not – but recent owner Todd Boehly is keen to make a splash. While the likes of Raheem Sterling, Matthijs de Ligt and Raphinha have been linked, De Jong can also be on his wish list.
The Red Devils have made signing the 24-year-old their principal ambition this summer to reunite him with Erik ten Hag, who helped develop him at Ajax. However the news that Chelsea may also vie for his signature will come as an enormous blow to Old Trafford chiefs.
Principally, Thomas Tuchel can offer something United cannot – Champions League football. That golden carrot ultimately puts Chelsea on the forefront for De Jong – who doesn’t wish to drop into the Europa League.
Having won the competition in 2021, that also makes them more attractive of a location than United at this moment in time – who can only dream of entering the competition, let alone lifting the trophy. Ending sixth last season has given the Red Devils an entire host of problems elsewhere, including their ongoing Cristiano Ronaldo situation.
Another excuse why United is perhaps sweating over Chelsea’s registered interest in De Jong is the undeniable fact that they’ve something – or slightly someone – that Barcelona want. Marcos Alonso has already reportedly agreed terms with the Blaugrana and is keen to maneuver back to Spain.
A fee is yet to be settled with the Blues, though, who might use this as a possibility to drive the worth down for De Jong. Boehly has already utilised player-plus-cash deals in a proposition to Juventus for De Ligt that included one among either Timo Werner or Christian Pulisic.
United haven’t any such player on their books that may very well be used as a makeweight for De Jong while Chelsea could even offer Cesar Azpilicueta as well. The Spaniard can also be keen on signing for Barcelona and has reached personal terms with them as well.
Finally, Boehly’s meeting with the Barca board on Thursday night may need been met within the United offices with some unease amid several transfer sagas revolving across the two clubs. The subject of transfers propped up yet it is just not known if any agreement was made, though the improving relations between club chiefs will only strengthen any negotiations in the long run.
At Old Trafford, where Richard Arnold and John Murtough are grappling with a fluctuating transfer window, this can’t be excellent news while their ongoing summer efforts may need been all for nothing. In a yr where United should get it right, this has been an unlucky start.