Man Utd dealt massive blow in De Jong pursuit

Cameron Smith
Cameron Smith 2 Jul 2022 20:04 BST 3 min read
Frenkie de Jong, Barcelona, 2021-22

Manchester United's hopes of signing Barcelona and Netherlands midfielder Frenkie de Jong have been dented by news he "wants to stay" at Camp Nou next season.

De Jong, 25, is Man Utd's number one transfer target this summer as Erik ten Hag looks to be reunited with his former Ajax student.

Ten Hag has personally asked for De Jong's signing and the Red Devils have been working on a deal for weeks. The player hasn't stated a desire to leave Barcelona, but Man Utd have been confident of convincing him to leave Spain for Old Trafford.

With Barcelona struck by financial issues, it's understood they may need to offload saleable assets this summer, and De Jong has reportedly been seen as one such player.

However, Barcelona president Joan Laporta has dealt Man Utd's hopes of signing De Jong a huge blow.

What has Laporta said?

Laporta, 60, has told the Spanish press that De Jong is going nowhere this summer, despite the interest from Man Utd.

According to Reshad Rahman, he has revealed: "We have no intention of selling him, and he wants to stay."

Laporta added: "There are clubs that want him, not just United. Frenkie is considered as one of the best midfielders in the world by all the experts. We are happy to have him.

Frenkie de Jong has over 40 Netherlands caps

Frenkie de Jong has over 40 Netherlands caps

"I'm going to do everything I can in my power so that Frenkie stays here, but there’s also a salary issue and that would have to be adjusted."

The glimmer of hope Man Utd can take is the fact that Barcelona may not be able to actually afford to keep De Jong if they intend on signing Raphinha, Robert Lewandowski, Marcos Alonso and Jules Kounde, as has been reported.

With money tight, they may have to let De Jong join Man Utd, but Laporta certainly seems ready to fight in order to keep hold of the Dutch midfielder.

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