Manchester United are reportedly close to their first summer signing according to Spanish journalist Gerard Romero. It is a long time coming for United supporters, who have seen frustration earlier on Wednesday after Benfica forward Darwin Núñez, who is reportedly close to a Liverpool move.
United knew that this summer under the management of Erik ten Hag needed to see business move a lot quicker than it had in previous summers under Ed Woodward, which saw United stagnate massively in the transfer market, leaving it late in the summer to conclude deals.
In recent transfer windows, it has been clear that United needed to reinforce the midfield with the likes of Nemanja Matić and Paul Pogba departing the club this summer, leaving Scott McTominay, Fred and Bruno Fernandes as the experience midfielders.
Over the past few weeks, following the end of the domestic season all over Europe, it was speculated that United manager, Ten Hag wanted to sign his former Ajax midfielder, Frenkie de Jong this summer. However, it was also speculated that it would not be all that simple.
We have seen the rumours that the 25-year-old did not want to leave Barcelona, also the fact that the Catalan club’s finances are not in the best place, therefore leaving the club with the option of selling the Dutchman or another star player.
The reports seemingly coming out of Spain on Wednesday evening seem to be positive for United and their pursuit of the Netherlands international. Gerard Romero has claimed that one of de Jong’s representatives told him; “the process of Frenkie to Manchester United has been activated.”
Other reports have suggested that United have made their first financial bid for the Dutchman worth €80 million (almost £68.4 million) – a €60 million (£51.3 million) up front fee, plus €20 million (£17.1 million) in variables or add-ons which has been reported by Luis Rojo, a journalist for Marca.
It will now be down to Barcelona accepting or rejecting the initial offer, which could happen in a matter of hours or even days, resulting in United having to go back with a better offer. In my personal opinion, it seems unlikely that Barcelona will accept this, seeking a higher fee.
It has been reported in the past that Barcelona require €100 million (£85.5 million) to sell the Dutchman, as was reported by Football Espana in the past month. However, the Mail Online has reported that it could have just £58 million to sign the player, which seems unrealistic.
Written by John Walker