Netherlands midfielder Frenkie de Jong has been on Manchester United’s radar for quite some time now but Barcelona boss Xavi isn’t looking to sell him this month..
Xavi has ruled out departures at Barcelona this January, saying: “I think it’s going to be a quiet window for us”.
The news will come as a blow for Manchester United, who remain hot on the heels of Netherlands international Frenkie de Jong.
The Red Devils were in pursuit of the Dutchman for much of the summer before turning their attention to Real Madrid midfielder Casemiro and splashing £70million to secure his signature. De Jong was unimpressed with United failing to qualify for the Champions League, but Erik ten Hag – who he worked with at Ajax – has transformed the club back into a top-four outfit.
United are now a much more attractive proposition and unsubstantiated reports in Spain suggest De Jong isn’t entirely against the idea of signing for the Red Devils this January.
De Jong has experienced a tumultuous 12 months at Barcelona with the cash-strapped club at times seemingly looking to force him out the door in a bid to get the highest-paid player off their wage bill.
The 25-year-old has stuck to his guns throughout the ordeal and still considers Barcelona – who are currently top of LaLiga on joint points with bitter rivals Real Madrid – to be his “dream” destination.
And now Barcelona boss Xavi has gone one step further by ruling out movement this month, telling the press: “I don’t want Memphis [Depay] or any other player to leave in January. I think it’s going be a quiet window for us.”
By contrast, United boss Ten Hag recently hinted his side are in the market for new recruits this January, telling the media: “I think we always have to do better in the organisation of the club. So we will always look for better and if there are opportunities, we will strike.”
United are primarily on the hunt for a new centre-forward following the departure of Cristiano Ronaldo, whose contract was terminated in November following an explosive interview with Piers Morgan in which he verbally attacked the Old Trafford club.
The Red Devils recently missed out on Cody Gakpo who snubbed United in favour of their bitter rivals Liverpool.