Pep Guardiola is ready to do battle with arch rivals Manchester United and Barcelona for the signature of highly rated Ajax ​wonderkid Frenkie De Jong in January, in order to bolster his midfield options.

According to reports in the ​Mirror, Manchester City tabled a £50m offer for the 21-year-old in the summer but it was rejected by Ajax - who are confident their star man in is staying put in Amsterdam.

UEFA Champions League'Ajax v AEK FC'

De Jong has been ever present for Ajax this season and has also caught the eye of Spanish champions ​Barcelona

With passing accuracy of almost 92% this season, De Jong would integrate well into a team where possession of the ball is key to the philosophy Pep Guardiola has implemented. 

Guardiola has identified that the defensive midfield position is a potential weak spot for the champions, as relying solely on the ageing ​Fernandinho as the only recognised defensive midfielder is not feasible. 


Questions have been asked of how long box-to-box midfielder Fernandinho, who represented his country Brazil at the World Cup, can continue to perform at such a high level week in week out at the age of 33.

​Bayern Munich’s Thiago Alcantara and Adrien Rabiot of Paris Saint-Germain are also on City’s radar, with Alcantara having played under Guardiola at Barcelona and Bayern Munich.

A potential move for Alcantara in January could be on the cards with Bayern stating they were open for offers for the Spanish midfielder in the summer. 23-year-old Rabiot, an ex-Manchester City academy player, is out of contract in the summer and could potentially move to the Etihad on a free.