Erik ten Hag keen on another Barcelona midfielder after lengthy Frenkie de Jong pursuit

Erik ten Hag’s signings over the last nine months have one of the main reasons behind the club’s resurgence under the Dutchman but he is far from building the finished product at Old Trafford.

Ten Hag’s priority in his first summer transfer window was to strengthen the midfield and the additions of Christian Eriksen and Casemiro have certainly done that, with Marcel Sabitzer also adding depth in a mid-season loan deal.

Ten Hag did, however, not land his prime target last summer as a protracted pursuit of Barcelona midfielder Frenkie de Jong dragged on and eventually collapsed.

De Jong was never sold on the idea of leaving Barcelona and despite the two clubs coming to an agreement on a transfer fee, the player’s personal preference was to stay. The saga lasted for over three months, with even reports as late as August claiming De Jong was still the club’s priority.

Now, with roughly two months remaining of the current season, rumours are heating up regarding potential midfield recruits this summer and according to reports, Ten Hag now has his eyes on another Barcelona star.

That’s according to Mundo Deportivo, via Sport Witness, who claim that Franck Kessie could be an option for Ten Hag as the manager is not finished with his revamp in midfield.

As per the report, Kessie would fit the bill in Ten Hag’s vision and although the player’s preferences are not specified, it’s claimed that Barcelona could sell some of their assets due to the increasing pressure and scrutiny around their financial situation.

SN’s verdict…
With just two months of the season remaining, it’s fair to assume that United and Ten Hag have already mapped the summer transfer window out and identified their key targets.

Kessie’s first season at Barcelona has not been comfortable but he remains a regular under Xavi. Reviving the pursuit of De Jong feels like another dead-end waiting to happen and Ten Hag could very well look at other alternatives.

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