Erik Ten Hag targeting second Barcelona star following Frenkie De Jong impasse

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Despite targeting him for several weeks, Manchester United are struggling to convince Barcelona midfielder, Frenkie De Jong, to move to Old Trafford.

The Red Devils, led by former Ajax boss Erik ten Hag, are widely reported to have identified De Jong, 25, as their top summer target, but although they have agreed a £72m fee with Barcelona (Fabrizio Romano), getting a deal over the line is proving problematic.

The 25-year-old is believed to be unsure about leaving the Nou Camp and is also owed around £17m in deferred wages (The Guardian).

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Although set to continue in their pursuit of the Netherlands international, while all parties remain in limbo, according to a more recent report from Nacional, ten Hag has briefly turned his attention to full-back Sergino Dest.

Sergino Dest to Manchester United?

Dest, 21, just like De Jong, is another player that United’s Dutch tactician knows well.

Having been a product of Ajax’s famous youth academy before his 2020 move to Catalonia, the 21-year-old’s earlier development was overseen by Manchester United’s new gaffer.

Erik ten Hag (left) overseeing Sergino Dest (centre) during Ajax training in 2019.

A move, although it would be a surprise, could actually prove to be a decent bit of business by the 20-time league winners.

As we mentioned, ten Hag knows Dest well so he is likely to be able to get the best out of him, but the American would also provide Diogo Dalot with some much-needed competition, especially if Aaron Wan-Bissaka does move on before the end of the window.

Should Manchester United follow their new manager’s recommendation and make a move for the USMNT international, Barcelona are expected to demand £17m (€20m).

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