De Jong quizzed on Man Utd transfer links
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Five players are currently blocking Frenkie de Jong’s move to Barcelona to Manchester United, according to reports. The Netherlands international is Erik ten Hag’s top target. But a move to Old Trafford still looks unlikely, even if the Red Devils believe they can get this deal done.
While Manchester United and Barcelona have agreed a £63million deal for De Jong, the 25-year-old’s future remains up in the air.
And, now, Algemeen Dagblad claim five players are inadvertently blocking the midfielder’s move to Old Trafford from going ahead.
Firstly, De Jong feels Barcelona will be even better next term given the business they’ve done so far this summer.
Andreas Christensen and Franck Kessie have joined on free transfers from Chelsea and AC Milan respectively, the pair set to add some steel and grit to Xavi’s backline and midfield.
Raphinha has touched down from Leeds, turning down moves to Chelsea and Arsenal in favour of playing in La Liga.
And, just recently, Barcelona wrapped up a blockbuster deal for Robert Lewandowski – who has arrived from Bayern Munich after eight years in Germany.
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De Jong is happy with the reinforcements arriving and that’s only strengthened his resolve when it comes to staying put.
And it’s claimed Sergio Busquets is another behind his thinking, too.
With the Spain international entering the twilight years of his career, De Jong fancies his chances of getting regular game time in the middle of the park.
So, with all these things at play, it looks increasingly likely the Netherlands international will choose to stay put.
That will be a blow for United, who seem to have their work cut out when it comes to luring the player to Old Trafford.
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Ten Hag would love to reunite with the midfielder, who he previously managed at Ajax.
But United, despite agreeing a fee with De Jong, are yet to convince the Netherlands international his future lies with them.
Speaking recently, meanwhile, Ten Hag revealed he’d place his faith in youth should a deal for De Jong fail to materialise.
“We’re looking for a player who can play in the holding midfield position, but it has to be the right one,” he said.
“There are not many in that position capable of the level we demand.
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“When we can’t find him, we have to deal with the players in our squad now and we will develop one in that position.
“We need the right player. We have a list and we will strike the moment the player is available.”
And Ten Hag also opened up on United’s summer transfer business so far.
United have brought in Tyrell Malacia from Feyenoord, beating Lyon to the left-back’s signature.
They’ve snapped up Christian Eriksen, too, with the Denmark international joining on a free transfer.
And Lisandro Martinez has made the move from Ajax, securing a reunion with Ten Hag in the process.
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“Eriksen is an experienced player, he’s played in Holland, Italy and especially England with Spurs, so a long career and also a lot of caps for the Danish national squad,” Ten Hag said.
“I think the whole Premier League knows what he can do, what he can contribute to the team, and I would call that creativity.
“Martinez is a different type. He’s a warrior, he brings aggressiveness, but he can also play football and has a good left foot.
“That is also what you need in the balance of the team, players who can create and also players who can defend.
“The defending part, we want to be proactive, and to be in the highest intensity defending.
“We are now three weeks on our way, and we are working on the defending part as well to be proactive.”
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