Frenkie de Jong has insisted he was always calm throughout the summer transfer window while he was touted with a transfer to Manchester United from LaLiga giants Barcelona.
The Dutchman was the top of Red Devils boss Erik ten Hag’s transfer wish-list and at one stage the two sides in question had even agreed a fee, all that was left to do from United’s perspective was to agree personal terms with the player. That proved too difficult as De Jong dug his heels in and had his heart set on staying at Barcelona.
From the perspective of the Catalan outfit, those at the top of the club hierarchy were keen on cashing in on De Jong in a bid to ease their own perilous financial situation. United were willing to pay as much as £65million, a figure that would have certainly eased the economic pressure around the Camp Nou.
However, De Jong stood firm and has since discussed his thought process during media duties before he lines up for the Netherlands in their upcoming UEFA Nations League fixtures against Poland and Belgium respectively.
“I always wanted to stay at Barcelona and this is why I always remained calm in the summer,” the 25-year-old explained, making it clear he was never too keen on a move to Old Trafford. He went on to address the fact that at times throughout the saga, it did not appear as if De Jong and Barcelona were entirely on the same page.
“I can’t give too much details away. But look.. the club has it’s own idea’s and I have my own idea’s too and sometimes this clashes with each other. But at the end of the day things went okay.”
HAVE YOUR SAY! Will United regret missing out on De Jong? Comment below
With just weeks of the window left by the time it became clear De Jong was not going anywhere, United were forced to explore other midfield options and ended up signing two new options for Ten Hag to deploy in the middle of the park.
De Jong’s former El Clasico rival Casemiro parted ways with Real Madrid after nine years in the Spanish capital to test himself at Old Trafford. He was soon followed by former Spurs, Inter Milan and Brentford star Christian Eriksen who joined on a free transfer.
Both have started their respective United careers in positive enough fashion, but De Jong’s ability to break lines with both his passing and dribbling technique would have undeniably proved invaluable to what Ten Hag is trying to build.
Given the pair worked closely at Ajax together, it came as somewhat of a suprise De Jong was so opposed to a reunion with his old boss Ten Hag.