Ahead of Tottenham’s colossal showdown with champions Manchester City in a Premier League clash at Wembley on Monday night, it appears that Pep Guardiola’s side have already stolen a march on the north London side with the potential signing of Frenkie de Jong.
The Ajax star has become a major transfer target for a number of top clubs around Europe in recent months, with Tottenham said to have attempted to seal a deal for the Dutchman during the summer for £25m.
Barcelona and Manchester United have also been credited with interest in the midfielder - whose valuation is believed to have jumped to £45m, before rising to £71m. According to the Daily Star, Manchester City are set to win the race by meeting Ajax’s demands.
It is said that the Eredivisie side’s most recent increase of de Jong’s valuation has priced Tottenham out of a move, with Mauricio Pochettino’s side unable to match the lofty demands for the 21-year-old’s signature.
That has apparently left Man City primed to win the race at last, with the mega rich Premier League champions more than able to stump up what would be a club record fee to lure the talented star from Amsterdam to Manchester.
Guardiola’s midfield ranks have been greatly bolstered in recent transfer windows, meaning that de Jong would face strong competition for his place in the champions’ midfield setup. As such, the report goes on to suggest that City may be tempted to seal the deal for de Jong in January, before loaning the midfielder back to Ajax for the remainder of the season.
Such a deal would enable both de Jong and Ajax to stay true to an apparent pledge which was mutually made between player and club, that the starlet would see out the current campaign in at the Johan Cruyff Arena.
It is said that City’s strongest competition in sealing the deal for de Jong would come in the form of La Liga champions Barcelona, with the player apparently a self-confessed fan of the Catalan giants.