Barcelona president Joan Laporta has confirmed that the club want to sell more players this summer, with a report detailing an offer to Frenkie de Jong.
Barca have caught the headlines this summer for their expansive spending, despite seemingly lacking funds. Amid a mountain of debt, they have nevertheless invested big on Robert Lewandowski and Raphinha.
But the sale of key assets, such as 25 per cent of their La Liga TV rights to Sixth Street, is securing fresh investment.
Barcelona want to make more money by selling some of their players. Laporta insisted last week that Barcelona “really like” Netherlands midfielder De Jong – a key Man Utd target – but will hold talks over his future.
United have reportedly agreed an initial €75million (£63million) fee for De Jong. Barca see him as their most saleable player asset, but the fact his club owe him millions in deferred wages is complicating matters.
According to The Independent [25/07, 10.30am] Barcelona have failed with an offer to resolve the wages situation with De Jong.
He is owed €17million (£14.4million) by Barca, who were still over €10million (£8.4million) short of the total sum with their offer.
De Jong wants the money back that he agreed to forego during the pandemic to help Barcelona out. And the issue remains a major sticking point left in the protracted Man Utd negotiations.
But there is also the fact that De Jong doesn’t want to leave Camp Nou – at least not for Old Trafford.
Laporta claims Barcelona concerns easing
Meanwhile, Laporta has insisted to ESPN FC that he arrived at Barcelona with a club “on the verge of folding”.
But he said he has more than “overcome” such problems, putting the club “back in a financial position where it can face any challenge”.
On more player sales this summer, Laporta said: “We still have work to do. There are players coming in and out, but we have done a good job adding players.
“They know that there are players who the manager doesn’t have [room for] anymore for whatever reason.
“So we have to accommodate an exit for them. They [transfer negotiators] are on course for an excellent rating.”
De Jong to Man Utd drags on
Barcelona may fail to pay De Jong what he is owed, but they have the advantage given that the midfielder wants to stay at Barcelona.
And AS has reported that De Jong accepted head coach Xavi’s no-nonsense request for him to take a pay cut.
In that sense, the midfielder could get his way and stay at Camp Nou, sacrificing his salary.
Why do Manchester United want Frenkie de Jong?
Why do Manchester United want Frenkie de Jong when the player seemingly doesn't want a move to Old Trafford?
United, though, have to hope that De Jong will in the end change his mind and seek a higher salary – and a move away.
The transfer fee agreement with Barcelona is there for Man Utd, but it is now up to the player to decide the deal’s fate once and for all.