Connect with us

Barça News

Man United manager spoke with Barcelona superstar to convince him to move last summer



Photo by Michael Regan/Getty Images

It is no secret that Manchester United made a concerted effort to try and sign Barcelona midfielder Frenkie de Jong in the summer transfer window of last year.

The Red Devils were embarking on a new journey under new boss Erik ten Hag and the Dutchman, who had worked with de Jong at Ajax, wanted a reunion with his former protege at Old Trafford.

MARCA has now come out with a fresh report revealing the extent to which Manchester United tried to sign de Jong from Barcelona last summer.

The Blaugrana, for their part, were open to parting ways with the 25-year-old midfielder as they saw him as a way to boost the club’s income and free up space on their bloated wage bill. An agreement between the two teams was understood to be in place as well.

However, de Jong dug his heels in and refused to leave the club, even though he had been played as a centre-back in pre-season as a possible pressure tactic, while he also lost his place in the starting XI early in the campaign.

But, the Netherlands international did not budge from his stance. So, ten Hag took matters into his own hands and spoke directly with his compatriot to try and convince him to move to Manchester United. However, there was no changing de Jong’s mind as he stood his ground.

Months later, de Jong is now a permanent fixture in the middle of the park for Barcelona, showing exactly why the club shelled out €86 million for him in 2019.

De Jong has thrived under Xavi this season, especially in recent weeks when the manager has tweaked his tactics and deployed four central midfielders, with Gavi operating as a pseudo-winger.

The Dutchman has also shown that he can be a trustworthy option in the pivot position when Sergio Busquets has been absent. Indeed, de Jong stepped into the role this past weekend against Sevilla after his captain was taken off injured just five minutes in and performed admirably.

And, as per the report from MARCA, de Jong will be taking ownership of the position for the upcoming matches until Busquets returns from injury.

Seen as an ‘untouchable’ in the team now, de Jong will meet ten Hag imminently when Barcelona and Manchester United clash in the UEFA Europa League next week. But any possibility of a transfer to Old Trafford does not seem to exist at this point.

Trending Articles