Manchester United’s Frenkie de Jong pursuit was handed a boost yesterday as Barcelona failed to meet La Liga’s financial fair play requirements when trying to register their new signings.
As reported by The Peoples Person, the Catalan giants have fallen €150m short on their requirements to meet the league’s criteria.
President Joan Laporta, much like some crazed runaway train operator, seems to see no problem that can’t be solver with a lever.
However in this instance, the last “economic lever” he has yet to pull would only generate €100m, which would still leave them considerably short.
The sale of De Jong therefore looks to be vital for Barca.
And as The Peoples Person reported right back in July, the La Liga club may find the date of their first match of the season – August 13th – to be an uncomfortable deadline by which they must generate funds.
Regardless of all of this, Laporta has often publicly stated his “love” for De Jong, while simultaneously pressuring the player to slash his wages again to help Barca manipulate their numbers.
Speaking to the New York Times (quotes via utdreport), the President at once says that Barcelona will pay the Dutchman what he is owed – “He has a contract, and we follow the contract” – and that De Jong needs to “help the club” by restructuring his salary.
Joan Laporta has declared his “love” for Frenkie de Jong. He adds that De Jong needs to “help the club” by restructuring his salary. Laporta also says Barcelona will pay De Jong what he is owed: “He has a contract, and we follow the contract.” #mulive [@nytimes]
— utdreport (@utdreport) August 4, 2022
It seems that the only contract Barcelona have any intention of honouring is an entirely new one, that sees the playmaker abandon the money owed to him having agreed to help Barcelona meet their financial requirements by restructuring his wages two years ago.
Even club legend Gerard Pique is rumoured to be a casualty of Barcelona’s financial mire, with @DeadlineDayLive earlier tweeting:
“Right now, if Gerard Pique doesn’t lower his salary, Barcelona won’t be able to register Lewandowski, Koundé, Raphinha, Kessié and Christensen. The club will then have to activate a 4th economic lever.”
🚨 Right now, if Gerard Pique doesn’t lower his salary, Barcelona won’t be able to register Lewandowski, Koundé, Raphinha, Kessié and Christensen. 😳
The club will then have to activate a 4th economic lever.
— Transfer News Live (@DeadlineDayLive) August 5, 2022
All of this is compounded by the fact that Barca seemingly have no intention of slowing down in the market this window.
Despite their lavish spending – both on transfer fees and wages – Barca have reportedly met with and received encouragement from Jorge Mendes over their pursuit of Bernardo Silva.
They have even been given ‘the green light’ by the super-agent, according to reports.
The Manchester City player has often been linked with a move to La Liga and his manager seemingly acknowledged the possibility of a move. Pep Guardiola said earlier this summer:
“Today I think Bernardo Silva will stay. But as I’ve always said, from my time at Barca, I don’t want players who don’t want to be at my club.”
Should Barcelona opt to sign Silva, they will have no hopes of meet financial fair play requirements without moving on De Jong.
For Manchester United, a “broad agreement” is already in place with Barca for De Jong, and they are confident in securing Erik ten Hag’s priority transfer target, believing that De Jong’s public stance is a necessity in recouping his lost salary in Catalonia – worth around €17m.
The situation has dragged on for months, however, leaving many United fans deeply concerned with the quality available to the new manager in midfield.
With Barcelona now scrambling to find the cash they need to register new signings Andreas Christensen, Raphinha, Frack Kessie, Jules Kounde, Robert Lewandowski and now potentially Bernardo Silva, the situation will surely come to a head by next weekend, when time runs out for La Liga registration.
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