Barcelona President Joan Gamper and coach Xavi Hernandez have made decisive comments on the future of Frenkie De Jong after the midfielder scored a superb goal for the Blaugrana in the Joan Gamper Cup.
Barcelona hosted Pumas at Camp Nou for the 2022 edition of their Joan Gamper cup on Sunday, August 7. The Blaugrana thrashed their visitors 6-0 to win the Joan Gamper cup for the 45th time.
Interestingly, Frenkie De Jong, with an uncertain Barca future, was on the score sheet. The former Ajax midfielder scored a classic goal in the 86th minute to make it six unreplied goals for the hosts. Ambushing a Pumas player from the back, De Jong charged forward on the Pumas box to meet the goalkeeper. A low right-footed shot sent the ball straight to the center bottom of the post, beating the agility of Pumas goalkeeper.
Despite a brilliant finish by the Dutch international, his future at Camp remains uncertain. Xavi and Laporta are on the same page regarding De Jong’s Barcelona future. After the match, Laporta stated that Frenkie De Jong is one of their best midfielders and he wants the Dutch international to stay at the club.
He said: “Frenkie’s our player and we want him to stay at Barcelona, he wants to stay too”.
“With him and his teammates, we have a very powerful midfield. He has offers, but we want him to stay”.
Barcelona coach, Xavi Hernandez also gave an update on the future of the 26-year-old, still feeding the air of uncertainty on De Jong’s future in the team. According to him, he doesn’t know what will happen in the coming days concerning the future of Frenkie De Jong in the team until August 31st. Xavi made it clear that De Jong knows the demand of the club from him, adding that it is left to the player to take a decision.
“I don’t know what will happen to Frenkie de Jong. Until August 31st anything can happen”, the coach said.
“He knows what I think and what the club want and need. Of course I’m counting on him, he’s a great player”.
What Does Barcelona Want From De Jong And Why?
Manchester United and Chelsea are battling each other to sign the Dutch international. The Red Devils have submitted a bid while the Blues are yet to submit any bid for the player.
Man United have reportedly reached agreement with Barcelona for the player. However, Joan Laporta have come out openly to state that De Jong is not for sale; that they want to keep the player.
Popular pundit and former Man United legend Gary Neville was quick to suspect a foul play in Barcelona’s handling of Frenkie De Jong’s case. Neville urged De Jong to take legal action against the Catalan club. Laporta has also been blamed for using extortionist tactics on Frenkie De Jong.
Despite interest from top clubs in England, De Jong has maintained that he wants to stay at Camp Nou. He is a great midfielder, and the Catalans want to keep him, but why agree on a deal with Manchester United to sell the player when you want to keep him?
Joan Laporta and Xavi want De Jong to take a pay cut and stay in Barcelona. A pseudo and purported deal with Manchester United may be a way of compelling the player to accept a pay cut or be ready to be offloaded from the team even against his wish.
The Covid-19 period flung Barcelona into a quagmire of a financial crisis. The club is tackling mounting debts estimated to be above €1b. They have liquidated some of their assets to offset the mounting debt.
They are currently owing De Jong outstanding wages of £17m. However, more players have been signed as they prepare for the 2022-2023 La Liga season.
They have also run into conflict with La Liga Fairplay rules and risk freezing their new signings. Indeed, the situation is complicated for the Blaugrana.
Barcelona Suspects Foul Play Threatens Legal Action Over De Jong Contract
Barcelona repeatedly urged De Jong to take a pay cut to relieve them of the mounting debt. The tone of engagement has now changed from a plea to accept a pay cut to a threat to take legal action.
According to the Athletic, the Catalan club has alleged elements of criminality and shady tactics by the former board led by Bartomeu, who oversaw Frenkie De Jong’s 2020 contract with the club. Barcelona wants him to revert to the 2019 contract as the legality of 2020 remains questionable.
It is unclear how the saga will unravel, but the Blaugrana will certainly want this to be sorted out as soon as possible to escape potential La Liga sanctions.