Joan Laporta has once again stressed that Frenkie de Jong would have to reduce his wages to stay with Barcelona beyond this summer (90min).
De Jong has been identified as the primary target by Erik ten Hag (Daily Mail) to help with the rebuilding process at Old Trafford. Manchester United have already reached an agreement in principle with Barcelona regarding the midfielder’s potential transfer for £63million plus another £8.47million in bonuses (The Athletic).
Fabrizio Romano has revealed time and time again that de Jong intends to remain at Camp Nou (Caught Offside). That being said, a wage reduction is stated to be “unlikely” with the Catalans’ new board looking to create a new and sustainable wage structure (Mundo Deportivo).
Now, Laporta has expressed that the club and the player would love to continue working together moving forward. However, he has warned de Jong that the midfielder must “make an effort” and reduce his salary to fit into the new wage scale after the previous board oversaw an increase of more than 40%.
Laporta said: “He wants to stay and we want him to stay. That’s the most important thing. What’s clear is that we have a new salary scale and all the players have to fit into it. We are trying to make these players understand the reality of the club.”
“We find ourselves with a payroll which has risen by more than 40%. We all have to make an effort. We are going to do everything possible for him to stay and we hope that the player will also do everything possible to stay.”
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It is pretty clear at this point how de Jong is the cornerstone of the project that ten Hag is trying to build in Manchester. United have done everything on our part at this moment, but the holding midfielder continues to remain firm in his stance about staying with the Catalan giants.
Unitec cannot afford to risk their future for just one player, so it is well past high time that the club decides to look for alternative targets. We have been linked with several other players who could do a solid job in the double pivot role, even if they may not be of similar stature to de Jong.
The likes of Wolverhampton Wanderers’ Ruben Neves, Youri Tielemans of Leicester City (talkSPORT) and PSV Eindhoven ace Ibrahim Sangare (Daily Mail) have been linked with the Red Devils over the past few weeks. All of them are solid options indeed who could do a fine job under the right system.
As such, United must now set a deadline regarding our pursuit of de Jong. After all, reinforcing the midfield position is one of our priorities, especially after the departures of Paul Pogba and Nemanja Matic on free transfers this summer (GOAL), leaving us shorthanded in terms of quality technical options in pivot positions.