Barcelona reached an agreement with Gremio for “purchase option” on Arthur, and now the Catalan club are hoping to agree a similar deal with Ajax in making their midfielder Frenkie de Jong their first signing of the 2019 summer transfer window.
According to Mundo Deportivo, the La Liga winners’ technical secretary Robert Fernandez and general manager Pep Seguara have closely watched the 20-year-old and club teammate Matthijs de Ligt on several occasions this season.
Mundo Deportivo reports De Jong “fits like a glove” in Barcelona’s system and would be a quality addition to their squad.
Ernesto Valverde currently has the services of Ivan Rakitic, Andre Gomes, Denis Suarez, Sergio Busquets, Paulinho and Andres Iniesta as the recognised midfielders in the squad. The latter has already announced his decision to leave the Camp Nou, Gomes is for sale, and three of the others are coming into the autumn of their careers.
Barcelona believe it is necessary to inject some fresh legs and think the Ajax player would be the right fit. They’ve already held talks with the player’s agent and have expressed their desire of signing him in 2019.
The Camp Nou outfit are aware there will be other clubs interested in landing De Jong. The report claims they want Ajax to block his transfer until the end of the next campaign. Barcelona have also assured the player that they will “go for him” next summer.
Ex-Barcelona midfielder Marc Overmars is the director of football at Ajax and is aware of the growing interest from his former club.
So far, the report does not talk about competition fromany other clubs, but that doesn’t mean there would be no competition. Ajax have seen recent interest from several clubs in signing their young players, including the likes of De Jong, De Ligt and Justin Kluivert.