Manchester United ‘reach breakthrough in Frenkie de Jong pursuit’
Manchester United have reportedly moved a step closer to signing Frenkie de Jong by agreeing to pay the £17m that the Netherlands international is owed by Barcelona in deferred wages.
Due to the club’s financial issues and the problems caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, De Jong came to an agreement with the Catalan side which would see him have the money paid over the remainder of his deal, which is due to expire in 2026.
According to Sport, Man United initially refused to pay the figure, said to be in the region of £17m, but the 20-time English champions have now made it clear that they are prepared to take on the debt.
As a result, the Red Devils have allegedly moved a step closer to agreeing a deal for the Dutchman, who has also been strongly linked with Chelsea in recent days.
De Jong has been at the centre of one of the biggest transfer sagas of the summer, with Man United thus far being unable to bring him to Old Trafford despite weeks of negotiations.
Man United would allegedly not legally be able to assume the debt, but they could come to an agreement where they pay the £17m through bonuses and wages.
Red Devils boss Erik ten Hag is said to have made the midfielder a priority target when he first held transfer meetings with the 20-time English champions.
Man United are believed to be prepared to pay the Dutchman a salary of £450,000 a week, which would make him the second-best paid player at the club behind Cristiano Ronaldo.
The Premier League club have already brought three new players to Old Trafford this summer, with Tyrell Malacia, Lisandro Martinez and Christian Eriksen arriving to boost the squad.
Man United concluded their preparations for the 2022-23 campaign with a 1-1 draw with Rayo Vallecano at Old Trafford on Sunday afternoon.
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