Manchester United handed another setback in Frenkie de Jong pursuit as Barcelona star reveals intention to stay at club for another ‘eight or ten years’

    Manchester United have been dealt another blow in their pursuit of Frenkie de Jong after he reiterated his wish to stay at Barcelona.

    United boss Erik ten Hag put De Jong at the top of his shopping list during the summer after having managed the 25-year-old during their time together at Ajax.

    The De Jong transfer saga lasted the entire length of the summer window

    Getty

    The De Jong transfer saga lasted the entire length of the summer window

    Barcelona initially put De Jong on the market as they battled to overcome their mounting financial woes.

    Despite appearing to be surplus to requirements at the Nou Camp, the Dutchman maintained his stance that he was going nowhere by turning down United’s advances and eventually remaining in Catalonia.

    De Jong began the season as a substitute but has quickly found his way back into boss Xavi’s plans having started ten of Barcelona’s last 13 games.

    The midfielder is gearing up for the World Cup with the Netherlands but had time to discuss his club situation, after what was an uncertain summer.

    “I am very happy in Barcelona,” he told Dutch newspaper Telegraaf. “When I play, it’s great and in terms of living here – life is perfect.

    “I see myself at Barcelona for as long as possible. I personally hope for another eight or ten years”.

    The lure of playing for former Ajax boss Erik ten Hag was not be enough for De Jong to leave Barcelona

    getty

    The lure of playing for former Ajax boss Erik ten Hag was not be enough for De Jong to leave Barcelona

    De Jong may have survived Barcelona’s summer cull but it remains to be seen whether he will be quite so lucky next summer.

    With Barcelona debts continuing to cloud the club, their financial position was made even more precarious after their premature exit from the Champions League.

    Club chiefs had initially budgeted to reach the quarter-final stage as a minimum after riskily splashing out on the likes of Jules Kounde, Robert Lewandowski and Raphinha from Leeds United.

    Not even the free-scoring Robert Lewandowski could prevent Barca crashing out of the Champions League

    Getty

    Not even the free-scoring Robert Lewandowski could prevent Barca crashing out of the Champions League

    Instead, the Catalan giants face their second straight season in the Europa League where ironically, they take on Manchester United in the play-off round in February.

    The remainder of the season will provide De Jong with another shot at proving his worth to Xavi ahead of what could be another unwanted bidding war for the midfielder.

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