Sky Sports News claim that Manchester United have reached a ‘broad agreement’ with Barcelona over the transfer of Frenkie de Jong.
BREAKING: Manchester United are close to agreeing a deal with Barcelona for midfielder Frenkie de Jong 🔴 pic.twitter.com/MmtDYabWPf
— Sky Sports News (@SkySportsNews) June 28, 2022
With the two clubs having only “the finer details” to work out, De Jong should become the first signing of Erik ten Hag’s reign after a difficult month of negotiations.
Reports earlier in the window suggested a significant difference in valuation between the two clubs, with Barcelona initially demanding a deal worth €86m in guaranteed payments – essentially aiming for a profit on the add-on-based deal they struck with Ajax three years ago.
United have maintained that they would walk away from the deal if a reasonable price could not be agreed upon, with many at Old Trafford realising the amount of work that needs to be done on the squad.
In the end, an agreement looks has been reached, with Barcelona accepting €65m in guaranteed payments supplemented by performance related add-ons which could take the value of the deal to €80m.
In terms of salary, it has been reported that de Jong’s contract will be of roughly equal terms to those offered to Jadon Sancho last summer, when United signed the winger from Borussia Dortmund.
BREAKING: Frenkie De Jong is set to become one of the highest paid players at @ManUtd when he signs his official contract, with the Dutchman set to earn around £350,000 a week which will see him earn the same as Jadon Sancho. #MUFCTransfer #MUFC
— Juan Roberto (@JuanRoberto_) June 26, 2022
This bring the Dutchman’s earning back in line with those he originally agreed with Barcelona upon signing from Ajax, having been one of a number of stars forced to take a pay-cut due to the Catalan club’s financial turmoil.
With the deal finally having been concluded, Manchester United fans will look forward to a substantial improvement to their midfield options in the coming season.
Having lost Nemanja Matic and Paul Pogba on free transfers, only McTominay and Fred are established first team players, although James Garner will also hope to impress ten Hag during the club’s Tours 2022.
Nevertheless, it is expected that the new boss will want at least one more midfield signing, with Christian Eriksen set to decide over a contract offer from the club.
De Jong and Eriksen are regarded as “almost crucial” to the new manager’s plans by Dutch journalist Marcel van der Kraan, although some will wonder if a more dedicated holding midfielder could be needed to shield the back four.
In any case, previous reports indicated that the de Jong deal was causing delays in chasing other targets, with the Red Devils wanting to get the engine room sorted before seeing how much of the transfer budget remains to be spent fixing the squad’s other worrisome areas.
Right-wing, central defence and both fullback positions are seen as weaknesses, while a centre forward able to afford 37-year-old Cristiano Ronaldo a breather would be welcomed in the right circumstances.
It may be unlikely that all of those deals end up completed in this window, although United will certainly want the rebuild to start off in the best possible manner.