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Well, the Frenkie de Jong transfer saga refuses to die down. The Dutchman who joined Barcelona in 2019 for a €75 million fee has failed to hit the ground running. Nevertheless, his transfer saga has been the talk of the town this summer. While Manchester United were the frontrunner for the most part, Chelsea have now entered the race.

The Blues are looking to rebuild their squad under new owner Todd Boehly. After an underwhelming season, Chelsea have already lost Romelu Lukaku, Antonio Rudiger, and Andreas Christensen. However, Manchester United and Chelsea want a player of de Jong’s calibre.

The 25-year-old has played 138 matches scoring 13 goals and providing 17 assists at Barcelona. However, his impact has not been as strong as the club wanted. De Jong’s arrival at the club also came when Barcelona were going through their worst phase. 

During his three-season stay at the club, Barcelona lost 8-2 to Bayern Munich, got relegated to Europa League, lost Lionel Messi to Paris Saint Germain and almost went bankrupt.

And it seems Barcelona want to cash on him due to their precarious financial situation.

Frenkie de Jong at Barcelona 

In 2019, the Frenkie de Jong transfer saga was going strong. The then 22-year-old was part of an Ajax golden generation who won the Eredivisie and reached the Champions League semi-final. It was enough for Barcelona to splash €75 million on him.

The Catalans had won the La Liga but choked again in the Champions League against Liverpool. In that 4-0 defeat against Jurgen Klopp’s men, the Barcelona midfield was overrun several times.

This prompted the club to sign the youngster. However, he could only manage two goals and two assists in the league. A significant reason was that he was played out of his position.

Frenkie de Jong stats in the last 365 days.

Thoughts? 🤔#MUFC #DeJong

— Trafford Tribune (@TraffordTribune) May 11, 2022

Barcelona ended up finishing second in the league. The club sacked manager Ernesto Valverde in between the season, replacing him with Quique Setien. However, their most humiliating moment would come in the Champions League. 

Playing against Hansi Flick’s Bayern Munich, Barcelona were thrashed 8-2 at Estadio da Luz. This was their worst defeat in 74 years. De Jong’s stock fell in this match as, despite playing four central midfielders, they were overrun again in the middle of the park. 

In the next two seasons, they have failed to win La Liga, with Atletico Madrid and Real Madrid winning one each. 

The Gavi-Pedri-Nico Gonazlez conundrum 

Barcelona’s defeat against Bayern Munich came just after the Covid-’19 pandemic. It severely affected the club and reached a point where even Lionel Messi announced that he would want to leave the club (which he did a year later, albeit under different circumstances).

However, de Jong was still considered integral to the team’s future. However, it started to change after the appointment of Xavi. The former Barcelona legend wanted to build a squad with players from the team’s famous youth academy La Masia.

So in came such as central midfielder Pedri, and Gavi who were joined by Nico Gonzalez and several other players to the senior side. While currently, de Jong is the most talented of the lot, Xavi thought that La Masia graduates had a higher ceiling. 

I am 100% convinced with the fact that de jong didn’t even fullfill his 50% of potential which he showed in ajax in his three season two were with messi who automatically makes everyone looks good in team and in 3rd he was outshined by gavi and pedri. He is quality

— Cruyff1899 (@Legendkiller189) July 8, 2022

During this entire time, the financial threat that started during the Covid-19 pandemic was still lurking in the background. And when the 2021-22 season ended, Barcelona had tough choices.

The condition was so precarious that Barcelona sold a portion of their future earnings from selling merchandise and television rights to have a reasonable transfer budget. 

And this started a curious transfer saga. The sale of the merchandise and TV rights were expected to bring €700 million to the club. This prompts the question. Would Barcelona now sell him after securing their financial position?

Frenkie de Jong transfer news 

Manchester United and Chelsea are the frontrunners in the Frenkie de Jong transfer saga. Both teams, especially United, are looking to revamp their midfield to challenge the domestic and continental front.  

But before we delve into that, we must ask, will Barcelona let him go? Well, yes, but for the right price. The club would keep him, but if an offer upward of €70 million came, they would be tempted to cash in. 

Spanish journalists are intrigued to know why Chelsea owner Todd Boehly is in Barcelona, he was asked & he replied for a meal. I suspect his here to talk about Frenkie de Jong.

— Frank Khalid (@FrankKhalidUK) July 7, 2022

It is no secret that de Jong has failed to adapt to Barcelona’s style. However, his stock is still high, and with age on his side, he can indeed become one of the best players. This approach of Barcelona could be due to the massive losses they have taken on big signings such as Ousmane Dembele, Phillipe Coutinho, and Antoine Griezmann.

According to media reports, the club want to recoup the amount they paid for his transfer to Ajax. Xavi wants to build his midfield with the La Masia graduates and would like the money earned from de Jong’s transfer to be invested in other areas.

The club are already targeting Robert Lewandowski, who has expressed his intention to leave. However, Bayern Munich are holding strong and would only be interested if Barcelona offers a significant amount of money.

That amount could come from Frenkie de Jong’s transfer. 

And if they do sell, de Jong would have the choice of joining two top English clubs. So, who could win the race? Chelsea have a far better squad than United and have already added Raheem Sterling. Moreover, they already have hard-working midfielders such as Jorginho and N’Golo Kante, allowing de Jong to bring out his creative side. 

But, he will be under Erik ten Hag’s guidance at Manchester United. It was under the then Ajax manager that de Jong had become one of the best players. And a reunion with his former boss is tempting.

However, Thomas Tuchel has also experience in developing talent and with a far better team and pull, they could beat United to the Dutch star.

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