Frenkie de Jong: Barcelona ready surprise sale of second star as Xavi tries one last desperate trick to convince midfielder to join Man Utd

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Sergio Busquets, Frenkie de Jong and Marc-Andre ter Stegen, Barcelona, during FC Barcelona v Villarreal at Camp Nou Credit: PA Images
Sergio Busquets, Frenkie de Jong and Marc-Andre ter Stegen, Barcelona, during FC Barcelona v Villarreal at Camp Nou Credit: PA Images

Manchester United are banking now on Xavi to help push through the sale of Frenkie de Jong with the Barcelona boss seemingly just as desperate to see the move go through.

United manager Erik ten Hag still waits patiently to see if the deal for his No 1 target can go through. The Dutchman is seeking an Old Trafford reunion with his former Ajax protege to help steer United into a bright new era. But the protracted transfer has faced more hurdles than Colin Jackson did over his successful athletics career!

Indeed, agreeing a fee with Barcelona was not even half the battle for United. After several rounds of talks, United ultimately agreed a package with the LaLiga giants worth an initial £58m. A further £8m is due Barcelona’s way in bonuses.

However, convincing the player to up sticks from Catalonia to Barcelona has proved an arduous affair.

With an article citing 10 reasons why he’s not wanted to leave, the major sticking point has surrounded the deferred wages Barcelona owe De Jong. To that end, reports indicate they owe the player around £14.4m (€17m) in backpayments.

As a result, the player is digging his heels in over the move. And given any transfer away would likely see him forgo those payments, it’s easy to understand why the transfer is stalling.

In order to grease the wheels, pundit Gary Neville has urged De Jong to take drastic measures. His words though only appear to have kicked up a hornet’s nest, with a Barcelona old boy getting into a war of words with Neville.

Barcelona, though, remain desperate to sell. Their financial situation has been well documented. All the same, that’s not stopped deals for Raphinha and Robert Lewandowski for a combined £75m.

Xavi desperate to get Frenkie de Jong sold

Jules Kounde will soon follow for a further £55m.

As such, it’s little surprise that Barcelona are now turning their attention towards the sale of players. To that end, a report earlier this summer listed the nine players they want to offload. The most prominent name on that list was De Jong.

In order to try and convince the player to leave, though, Mundo Deportivo now reports Xavi has taken to desperate measures.

They report the Barca coach has told him De Jong that game-time this season will be severely restricted.

Frenkie de Jong singing the Dutch national anthem Credit: PA Images
Frenkie de Jong singing the Dutch national anthem Credit: PA Images

To illustrate the fact, they claim Xavi has told De Jong to get used to time on the bench. As such, he is now down to fifth choice in their midfield options with Nico Gonzalez, Gavi, Pedri and Franck Kessie all ahead of him. And with Sergio Busquests also still on the books, games will be hard to come by should he opt to stay.

Xavi hopes the tactic will convince De Jong that he will have no option but to move elsewhere.

And given he will be an almost guaranteed starter at Manchester United, De Jong may feel he is left with no choice.

You have to say too that the tactic may just have the desired effect. With the World Cup just a few months away, De Jong knows he needs regular action to make Holland’s squad.

Barcelona consider second player sale instead

Should they fail to convince De Jong to depart though, Barcelona will be left in a bit of a pickle.

As such, Cadena Ser reports president Joan Laporta will take drastic action and look to sell a surprise name instead.

And they report that it will be goalkeeper Marc-Andre Ter Stegen on the chopping block.

He was not one of the nine names originally put up for sale this summer.

But like De Jong, the goalkeeper is one of the club’s high earners. And it’s reckoned he is a player they would happily see depart if efforts to sell De Jong fail.

Earning £112,000 a week, Ter Stegen is soon due a salary rise under the terms of his contract. And having failed to negotiate a deferral, he’s the next player they want to sell to comply with FFP regulations.

However, it is Frenkie De Jong they want gone first. As such, they will hope Xavi’s warning to the player does the trick.

Meanwhile, one Barca star who won’t be joining United is Memphis Depay. The Netherlands forward has made clear his demands over a next club, with one major factor ruling the Red Devils out.

The article Frenkie de Jong: Barcelona ready surprise sale of second star as Xavi tries one last desperate trick to convince midfielder to join Man Utd appeared first on Teamtalk.com.

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