Chelsea are reportedly prepared ready to wait until the last day of the transfer window to complete a move for Manchester United transfer target Frenkie de Jong.
The Barcelona midfielder has been in talks with Blaugrana officials for the last month over his contract. The Barca board are keen to restructure his salary at the Camp Nou or alternatively sell the Netherlands star.
De Jong is obviously not so keen to see the new deal he signed in October 2020, under former president Josep Maria Bartomeu, torn up.
De Jong is still owed in the region of €14m in unpaid previous wages, but he is prepared to take a cut.
In fact, behind closed doors De Jong has made it clear that his preference is to remain in Catalonia for the 2022/23 season. Barca though need to lower their wage bill in order to register new players.
Sport claims Xavi has made it privately known that he wants to replace De Jong with Man City star Bernardo Silva.
City are understood to have slapped a £100m price tag on Silva, but are open to a sale, as per The Athletic. Much though will depend on De Jong’s future and Chelsea are prepared to wait.
Erik ten Hag has been chasing De Jong all summer, but their patience has snapped.
Man Utd’s Frenkie de Jong agreement expires
According to Dutch football expert, Marcel van der Kraan, Man Utd’s chances have taken a big hit.
Van der Kraan told Sky Sports a deadline has passed that has forced Manchester United into withdrawing everything they had previously agreed.
“Manchester United have officially withdrawn their offer to Barcelona,” said Van der Kraan.
That leaves Chelsea with a free run at De Jong for now. And Sport report that Todd Boehly and Thomas Tuchel are ready to go until the September 1 deadline to get the player on board.
Both Premier League clubs are prepared to pay the €80m asking price. And Chelsea are now waiting for the player’s stance to change.
Barca view De Jong’s departure as necessary and are hoping an exit can be secured before the deadline next month. That could still happen with contractual issues likely to come to a head in the next fortnight.
De Jong was a second-half sub in the 0-0 draw with Rayo Vallecano in Barcelona’s first LaLiga game on Saturday. Xavi opted for a midfield three of Sergio Busquets, Gavi and Pedri. And if he fails to see any more action his hand maybe forced.