Ryan Babel urges Frenkie de Jong to join Arsenal

Ryan Babel urged Barcelona midfielder, Frenkie de Jong, to snub Manchester United in favour of Arsenal or Manchester City.

As relayed by Tribal Football, Ryan Babel advised Netherlands midfielder, Frenkie de Jong, to avoid a transfer to Manchester United as he feels the player should be a better fit for Arsenal or Manchester City.

United were locked in extended transfer negotiations with the player’s entourage during the summer. Erik ten Hag wanted him to be the focal point of his system at his new club but the player kept his stance pretty clear as he refused to leave Barcelona.

The Spanish club appeared to be in deep trouble with their finances and had to activate a couple of economic levers to be at par with their counterparts. De Jong is one of the highest-paid players at Camp Nou and offloading him would have helped the club in balancing its books to some extent as they need to cut down their wage bill.

Both the clubs even reached a consensus regarding the transfer fee as United were prepared to pay an initial fee of €65 million which could further rise to €80 million adding some bonuses and add-ons.

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United’s failure to land their primary target proved to be a blessing in disguise as they roped in Casemiro from Real Madrid and also secured the signing of Christian Eriksen on a free transfer.

They are expected to renew their interest in the player for one last time but the Catalans are ready to initiate contract talks, although they would offer him lesser wages than his previous salary.

Babel feels de Jong is not ideal for Manchester United.

“For Frenkie I do not recommend that he go to United in all honesty. At least not today.

“He needs a team that wants to play football, real football on the ground. Yes, Manchester United have a manager who eventually, if they have the players he can do that. So far they have shown signs that Erik ten Hag knows what to do, but so far it’s not at the level of what he’s done at Ajax.

“So for Frenkie, if you go from Barcelona to United, I think it’s a step back. I prefer to see him in a team like City, or even Arsenal too.”

It remains to be seen whether De Jong changes his mind about his future as the 25-year-old is still very much capable of changing the shape of a game on his own.

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