Manchester City are in pole position to sign hot Ajax prospect Frenkie de Jong after Barcelona reportedly pull out of the race.
The 21-year-old has produced some eye-catching performances in the Eredivisie to attract attention from Europe’s elite clubs but City are willing to break their transfer record to secure his services.
According to Goal, the Citizens have laid out their terms to the Dutch club which would see them pay £62 million plus £18 million in bonuses to sign him.
It appears this amount of money has priced Barcelona out of the deal but they are clinging on to the fact that the Dutch youngster expressed a public interest in wanting to play with Lionel Messi.
Messi’s allure will only get the Catalan club so far and, inevitably, it has been said Spanish rivals Real Madrid and French superpower Paris Saint Germain have joined the party over the last few days.
Marca say that PSG have already offered €80 million for the Dutchman, which could signal a large bidding war, but the chance to work with Pep Guardiola could be the deciding factor.
So, following positive talks with Ajax’s director of football, Marc Overmars, and their own sporting director, Txiki Begiristain, the Blues seem to be in more advanced talks and want to make the deal happen sooner rather than later to ward off any interest from these continental giants.
The Manchester club seem willing to push a deal through this January and will leave de Jong on loan at Ajax till the end of the season, as they look to act quickly to prevent them from missing out on another top target.
If they win the race for his signature, it will signal a massive off-field victory for City and once again prove they are a force to be reckoned with on the European stage.