Frenkie de Jong ‘flattered’ by Manchester United transfer interest but happy at ‘biggest club’ Barcelona

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 (PA)
(PA)

Frenkie de Jong insists he is “flattered” to be linked with Manchester United, though is happy to remain at Barcelona this summer.

The Dutch midfielder is widely believed to be new Old Trafford boss Erik ten Hag’s top transfer target in his first window in the job as he plots a drastic overhaul of an underperforming squad.

United are bidding farewell to a whole host of midfielders this summer including Paul Pogba, Jesse Lingard, Juan Mata and Nemanja Matic, making reinforcements in the middle of the park a particular priority in their overdue revamp.

Reports suggest that the Red Devils have made an offer to sign Brentford playmaker Christian Eriksen, but that such a move would be potentially in addition to De Jong’s arrival, rather than instead of.

United have been locked in talks with Barcelona over a deal for a player with whom Ten Hag worked closely at Ajax, though progress has appeared slow.

Frenkie de Jong is Manchester United’s top target for the summer transfer window (PA)
Frenkie de Jong is Manchester United’s top target for the summer transfer window (PA)

And while De Jong is clearly pleased to be the subject of such strong interest from the Premier League giants, he appears in no rush to leave the Camp Nou, believing that Barca are a bigger club.

“You’re always flattered when teams show interest in you as a player, but I think I am at the biggest club in the world at the moment and I feel fine there... so no news,” he told reporters.

De Jong was speaking after helping the Netherlands to pull off another last-gasp win over Wales in the Nations League on Tuesday night, with the Group A4 leaders emerging victorious again 3-2 after Memphis Depay dramatically cancelled out Gareth Bale’s injury-time equaliser at De Kuip.

Club Brugge winger Noa Lang and PSV Eindhoven star Cody Gakpo had earlier struck inside six first-half minutes for the hosts, only for Wales to hit back through Brennan Johnson and Bale’s late penalty, with Depay then netting straight from the restart.

The Dutch, for whom De Jong is an integral figure and boasts 44 senior caps, remain undefeated since Louis van Gaal returned for a third stint in charge of the national team as the successor to Frank de Boer last summer.

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