Tensions are heating up between Barcelona and Frenkie de Jong after the club informed the midfielder they want to revert his deal to previous terms by force.
Manchester United are hellbent on landing the highly-rated playmaker by the end of the summer, and the recent developments in Spain could facilitate their bid to take him to the Premier League.
As claimed by The Athletic’s David Ornstein, new Barca president Joan Laporta and his associates have found the Dutchman’s deal suspicious and want to take legal action against all involved.
The new Catalan management believe that the terms handed to the 25-year-old midfielder by the former club’s board included criminality, which provides grounds for legal prosecution.
Ornstein insists that Barcelona’s new board of directors is looking to use their discovery as leverage to force de Jong to forego the club’s old promises and accept a wage reduction.
As mentioned before, the real reason behind the Spaniards’ decision to entertain the ex-Ajax man’s sale lies with his deferred wages, with the club owing him a truckload of money.
The former Barcelona leadership, led by Josep Maria Bartomeu, extended de Jong’s contract for two more years until 2026 with a promise to pay him back every penny they owned him since the coronavirus crisis.
However, the deal extension signed in October 2020, involving the decrease of the player’s salary for the 2020/21 and 2021/22 seasons, has been found illegal by the new hierarchy.
And while de Jong hopes to pocket close to €18m spread across the upcoming four seasons, Barcelona are aiming to initiate criminal proceedings against the Man United transfer target.
The club’s recent actions could expedite de Jong’s move to the Premier League, with his ex-Ajax boss Erik ten Hag waiting in the wings, ready to end his Camp No nightmare.
De Jong was on the scoresheet as Barcelona thrashed Liga MX outfit UNAM Pumas 6-0 in the Joan Gamper Trophy on Sunday, though it could prove his final appearance for Xavi Hernandez’s side.
Even though Laporta has triggered several economic levers to help Barca recruit and register new signings in the summer, the club are still struggling financially.
Their effort to compel de Jong to forfeit a sizeable debt is in line with an ongoing battle to overcome a severe economic crisis induced by the previous management.
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