Manchester United’s pursuit of No 1 summer transfer target Frenkie de Jong is being held up because Barcelona still owe the Dutch midfielder £17MILLION in deferred wages and bonuses
- Manchester United’s No 1 transfer target is still Frenkie de Jong this summer
- Any move for Dutchman is being held up by financial difficulties with Barcelona
- They owe midfielder deferred wages and bonuses that he has not been paid
- Another United target, Anthony, feels as though he could be priced out of move
The 25-year old agreed to defer some of his wages to help the club during the Covid pandemic but with his departure pending De Jong’s representatives want the player suitably compensated before he joins Manchester United.
United have agreed an outline fee with Barcelona for de Jong and had hoped to have him signed prior to leaving on tour this Friday. Discussions are continuing with de Jong open to joining amid regular talks with Erik ten Hag.
Barcelona still owe Frenkie de Jong money in bonuses and deferred wages
De Jong has played 140 times for Barcelona since joining from Ajax, scoring 13 times in his three seasons. His only trophy at the Nou Camp was the Copa del Rey in 2021.
A switch has also been complicated by Barcelona president Joan Laporta publicly insisting the club have no intention of letting De Jong leave.
He said in a press conference presenting new signing Franck Kessie: ‘Frenkie is not for sale. He is a Barcelona player. We don’t want to transfer him.’
United are determined to add new signings before the week is out, however.
The news will come as a blow to United boss Erik ten Hag, who sees De Jong as a top priority
Joan Laporta (left) doubled down on his stance to keep de Jong while unveiling the signing of midfielder Franck Kessie (right) from AC Milan on a free transfer on Wednesday
Having already reached agreement in principle on a three year deal with Christian Eriksen they are focusing attention on Ajax defender Lisandro Martinez.
Ajax anticipate new offers from both United and Arsenal over the next days with the Argentine keen to leave for the Premier League.
Lisandro’s team-mate Antony was hoping to earn a move to United also but his £70m valuation is prohibitive and the Brazilian fears he will be priced out of a transfer.
Antony (right) is a target for United boss Erik Ten Hag (left) after playing under him at Ajax
The former Sao Paulo attacker joined the Dutch team in 2020 and has made 78 appearances in all competitions, scoring 22 goals and making 19 assists.
United have dismissed reports that they have already made a bid for the winger as ‘nonsense’ with their immediate focus on Lisandro.
They know there is an urgency around that deal with Arsenal pushing to sign the 24-year old who is valued at around £43million.
Both clubs have offered £38m and are discussing revised bids.
Lisandro Martinez is the priority for Manchester United ahead of Antony