Frenkie de Jong again linked with summer Barcelona exit

  • Dutch midfielder consistently linked with move away from Catalan giants
  • De Jong has expressed happiness at Barcelona and wants to stay
  • Uncertainty over club's finances could facilitate transfer to Paris Saint-Germain
De Jong returned to action for Barcelona against PSG in the Champions League
De Jong returned to action for Barcelona against PSG in the Champions League / BSR Agency/GettyImages

The never ending saga over Frenkie de Jong's Barcelona future shows no sign of abating, with reports in Spain again linking the midfielder with a move to Paris Saint-Germain.

The Dutchman was first tipped to leave the club during the 2022 summer transfer window, when Manchester United looked to make him the first marquee signing for then-new manager Erik ten Hag. But after months of speculation, conjecture and talks between the two parties, the Red Devils eventually gave up their pursuit and settled for signing Casemiro from Real Madrid instead.

Barcelona had been under severe pressure to sell players in order to address their worsening financial situation, and not much has changed in the following two years. The Catalan giants are still heavily in debt, with Camp Nou currently undergoing a €1.5bn renovation, and remain under pressure to offload players on high wages in order to comply with La Liga spending rules.

De Jong has consistently outlined his desire to stay at Barcelona, whom he remains an important player for, but Spanish media SPORT revealed in the build up to the 3-2 win over PSG in the first leg of their Champions League quarter-final tie that if he opened the door to leaving ever so slightly, the French giants would be waiting to pounce.

PSG are preparing to lose Kylian Mbappe to Real Madrid this summer - another move that has been long in the making - and his impending departure is likely to signify a shift in the club's transfer policy.

Frenkie De Jong, Xavi Hernandez
Departing manager Xavi is a fan of Frenkie de Jong / Soccrates Images/GettyImages

No longer will the club spend extortionate amounts of money on ageing players - Lionel Messi and Sergio Ramos two recent examples - but will instead invest in talent capable of building a team for years to come. At 26, De Jong still has the best years of his career ahead of him, putting him firmly within the profile of player PSG are looking to build around.

De Jong has two years remaining on his Barcelona contract, meaning he's likely to retain a high value this summer, and for that reason he remains one of the club's most sellable assets. Raphinha and Lamine Yamal have also been linked with big-money exits, even though they both have important first-team roles.

Current manager Xavi has praised De Jong in the past and sees him as a key difference maker in midfield, but his impending departure in the summer - coupled with Barcelona's ability to cope without De Jong during a recent period of injury - is likely to keep the rumour mill spinning this summer, particularly if PSG show an appetite to make an appealing offer.