Barcelona are ready to leave Frenkie de Jong out of their squad for their pre-season tour if he turns down a move to Manchester United, it has been claimed. The Netherlands international is Erik ten Hag’s top target at Old Trafford. However, there’s still no guarantee a move will take place.
Manchester United have finally agreed a fee with Barcelona for De Jong.
But with the midfielder happy at the Nou Camp, it’s still uncertain whether or not he’ll make the move to Old Trafford.
Now, Catalan newspaper Sport have claimed De Jong will potentially be left out of Barcelona’s squad for their upcoming pre-season tour if he chooses to stay put.
The European giants feel De Jong simply ‘must’ accept the offer ‘yes or yes’ due to their desire to get him off the books for financial reasons.
De Jong feels like he is ‘between a rock and a hard place’ after he was informed of this development.
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With Barcelona’s need to sell only growing, it seems just a matter of time before De Jong makes the move to the Premier League.
And that will be huge news for Ten Hag, with the Dutchman seeing his compatriot as key to his plans at Old Trafford.
De Jong isn’t the only player United are working to sign, either.
They’re confident they’ll be able to soon unveil Christian Eriksen, who is poised to join after his Brentford contract expired.
United have agreed a fee with Ajax for Lisandro Martinez, who had previously been a transfer target for Arsenal.
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And the Red Devils are hopeful of landing Antony, though that deal doesn’t appear likely given Ajax’s huge £70million asking price.
De Jong, should he move to United, could take the No 21 shirt.
That’s the number he usually wears for the Netherlands national team, and is also the one he donned at Ajax.
The number is currently free, too, following the departure of Edinson Cavani – whose contract recently expired.
Meanwhile, if United are rejected by De Jong, talkSPORT’s Alex Crook has revealed Ruben Neves and Youri Tielemans are both alternatives.
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He said: “I think they should probably walk away sooner, to be honest, bearing in mind the first contact between Manchester United and Barcelona was the middle of May – we are almost in the middle of July.
“This is a ridiculous situation. It has been a saga for too long. Either it’s going to happen or it’s not.
“I know Manchester United have a back-up list. Youri Tielemans is on that list, as I understand it, as is Ruben Neves from Wolves.
“I would call Barcelona’s bluff now and say ‘either you sell him to us, or we will pay the same money and sign Ruben Neves’.
“He’s a player who is proven in the Premier League.”