Frenkie de Jong was never particularly close with Erik ten Hag at and the prospect of working with the Dutchman again at is not the exciting prospect that many claimed it to be.
That’s according to the Athletic, who say the Netherlands international is keen to stay at and has no intention of moving to Old Trafford.
Barcelona are keen to cash in on De Jong and they agreed a £63m fee with United around three weeks ago.
United are aware of De Jong’s desire to stay at Barcelona but they have maintained their interest throughout the summer as they feel the factors around his situation could eventually see him move to Old Trafford.
A significant part of that was thought to be the presence of Ten Hag at the Theatre of Dreams.
The Dutchman worked with De Jong for two years in the Dutch capital and he’s said to be in ‘constant contact’ with his former midfielder.
But the Athletic say De Jong did not have a ‘special relationship’ with the coach at Ajax and his appointment at United is not a significant factor in any decision to leave Barcelona.
De Jong is owed around £17m in wages by Barcelona and he wants the the deferred payments paid in full if he’s to leave the club.
Barcelona maintain publicly that they want to keep the Dutchman but behind the scenes they are keen to push him out and they have suggested that De Jong will have to battle for a spot in central defence if he remains at the club this season.
Despite their financial problems, Barcelona continue to spend big in the trasnfer market.
Andreas Christsen, Robert Lewandowski and Raphinha have arrived, while the club still hope to sign Bernardo Silva and Jules Kounde.
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