Barcelona president sets Manchester United deadline to complete de Jong deal

Frenkie De Jong
(Photo by James Williamson – AMA/Getty Images)

Barcelona president Joan Laporta has warned Manchester United indirectly that they must complete a move for Frenkie de Jong by August 13.

United are said to have already reached an agreement in principle with Barca for de Jong in a deal worth £63million plus an additional £8.47million in add-ons (The Athletic).

The Old Trafford outfit continue to be intent on signing the the former Ajax man despite having backup options on their transfer shortlist (Fabrizio Romano).

Laporta has now inadvertently handed United a deadline by suggesting that the La Liga giants must register their squad by a week on Saturday.

The Dutch midfielder is said to remain unconvinced about a move to the former Premier Leagye champions, however Barcelona are open to de Jong’s exit in order to balance their books and register their recent arrivals.

Speaking during Jules Kounde’s presentation, Laporta told the Evening Standard: “We are doing everything possible to register the signings. We have to do it before August 13.”

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Laporta’s words could have been quite problematic for Erik ten Hag’s side, but that is no longer the case. That is because the Spanish giants have activated their third financial lever recently, which has provided them with some much-needed funds to help with the registration.

Xavi Hernandez’s team have now sold 24.5% of Barca Studios to Socios.com for €100million (FC Barcelona), which means that Man United can breathe a sigh of relief since they can be afforded more time to convince de Jong to make a switch to Old Trafford.

The 25-year-old has not been utilised in his preferred role at the Blaugrana club despite joining them way back in 2019. Ten Hag has used de Jong in that deep-lying playmaker role, which is where the midfielder has excelled at Ajax and for the Netherlands.

Perhaps, ten Hag’s side could use that to make their case with the La Liga star as he could perform to his best in a system that gets the best out of the midfielder. However, with Chelsea also being interested in signing de Jong (The Athletic), United must be quick with their actions to limit the risk of being hijacked by their rivals.