Manchester United CEO Richard Arnold and director of football John Murtough have been snapped in Barcelona, leading to immediate speculation that they are there to discuss the transfer of Frenkie de Jong.
— United Journal (@theutdjournal) July 11, 2022
As reported here earlier, De Jong returned to Barcelona training today after his holiday in America.
His agent, Ali Dursun, was expected to join him to discuss his future with the Catalan club.
United are known to have made a bid of €65 million plus €20 million in variables for the player, which Barcelona have bradly accepted, with just the exact nature of the variables to be ironed out.
However, the player is owed around €17 million in back pay and is also due two substantial pay rises in the next two seasons at Barça.
The club president Joan Laporta has publicly insisted the player is not for sale but it is widely believed that the club need to sell the player to raise funds to land their summer transfer targets.
Laporta has also publicly stated that De Jong would need to take a salary cut if he is to stay at the club.
If Arnold and Murtough are there to discuss De Jong, it signals that the matter could be resolved quite quickly.
The Blaugrana are heading on tour in a few days and all parties will want the matter resolved by then.
There is also the possibility, albeit unlikely, that it is another player who is the reason for their arrival.
Cristiano Ronaldo is looking for a new club and United’s directors would prefer that destination to be overseas.
However, it is hard to imagine how the Catalans could absorb his wages, even if he were to take a drastic cut, without releasing the Dutchman.
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