Manchester United will make a final last-ditch attempt to lure Frenkie de Jong away from Barcelona as Erik ten Hag instructs Old Trafford chiefs to pull out every possible stop to secure his top summer transfer target.
The Manchester club’s hunt for De Jong has turned into the summer’s biggest transfer saga as negotiations between the two side’s and the player prepare to enter their twelfth week.
United are willing to make the Dutch midfielder the club’s highest paid player by matching his current £450,000-a-week salary.
They are also willing to pay the £17million De Jong is owed by Barcelona in deferred wages, as reported by Sport in Spain.
It’s understood Manchester United’s transfer chiefs will try and meet the Dutch star’s representatives when Barcelona return from their pre-season tour of America.
The issue surrounding outstanding wage payments has been the biggest stumbling point so far in efforts to bring the ex-Ajax midfielder to Old Trafford.
A reported deal worth £74million has already been agreed with Barcelona but De Jong is currently unwilling to swap La Liga for Premier League football.
Should he remain firm on his stance to stay in Spain then De Jong will have to take a pay cut despite the financially-struck club spending over £100million on new players this summer with Robert Lewandowski, Raphinha, Jules Kounde, Franck Kessie, and Andreas Christensen all joining.
United’s failure to qualify for the Champions League has also made any effort to sign the 25-year-old harder with the player keen to play in Europe’s top competition and fight for his place at Barcelona.
Erik ten Hag has made the midfielder his top summer transfer target but has already started to target alternative players as the move threatens to fall through.
According Sportsmail, Manchester United also are considering Stuttgart striker Sasa Kalajdzic as well as Benjamin Sesko of Red Bull Salzburg.
Austria international Kalajdzic, who is 6ft 7ins tall, is available for around £17million and is on United’s list of options.
The Austrian joined Stuttgart from Admira Wacker in 2019 and has proceeded to score 24 goals in 57 games.
Sesko, meanwhile, has scored 13 goals in 41 appearances for RB Salzburg. He gained experience during a loan spell at FC Liefering between 2019 and 2021.
Ten Hag wants to bolster his attack as United prepare for the start of the new Premier League campaign.
So far this summer United have signed Lisandro Martinez, Christian Eriksen and Tyrell Malacia.