Erik ten Hag has told Manchester United to continue pushing for Frenkie de Jong even if he is not signed before the new season begins, according to reports.
Earlier this week, United reached an agreement with Barcelona which would see them pay €75m (£63.7m) up front plus another €10m (£8.5m) in add-ons for the Netherlands midfielder.
But, De Jong is interested in staying at Barcelona and has shown no public indication that he would be ready to join United.
Reports this week have also claimed that De Jong’s agent approached Chelsea and PSG in an attempt to encourage the two teams to submit offers to Barcelona.
Despite De Jong’s reluctance to join United this summer, The Guardian claims that Ten Hag has told the club’s CEO Richard Arnold and football director John Murtough to keep trying, even if he is not signed before their Premier League opening game against Brighton on August 7.
Ten Hag views De Jong as a major part of his plans at United but the midfielder has made it clear that he wants to stay at Camp Nou.
De Jong has travelled with Barca’s squad for their pre-season tour of the United States, further indicating that he wants to remain integral to the La Liga giants.
Barcelona’s director of football Mateu Alemany said on Friday during their unveiling of Raphinha that De Jong will not be sold, despite their meeting with United earlier in the week.
‘Frenkie is an important player for us. We totally count on him. The story ends here,’ Alemany said.
‘The issue of fair play forces players to leave. Those who leave will be one or the other. More complicated is the departure of players who are less important that Frenkie.’