Manchester United have been frustrated in their pursuit of Frenkie de Jong, who has made it clear that he has no interest in joining the Red Devils (Sport).
I think Ten Hag needs to stop wasting time to convince the Dutch international and must move in to hire the services of a quality alternative in the form of Sergej Milinkovic-Savic.
Transfer: De Jong used as center back as Barca press him to sign for Manchester United
The Serbian international has been linked with the Old Trafford outfit for a long time and even last month, reports indicated that United have shown interest in the versatile midfielder.
As per La Gazzetta Dello Sport, Man Utd were not willing to splash 100 million euros three years ago but now, the player can be lured from Lazio for a fee of just £51.2million (60 million euros).
Milinkovic-Savic is a complete midfielder. He has excelled in the DM/deep lying plamaking role, pulled strings in the center of the park in the CM role and scored and created goals in the AM role.
Last season, the Serbian international mainly featured in the central midfield for the Serie A side and directly contributed in 23 goals (11 goals and 12 assists) in all competitions.
On the other hand, De Jong, who has also played in the CM role for Barca has directly contributed in 30 goals since joining the Catalan club (138 appearances). Last term, he scored 4 goals and provided 5 assists in all competitions.
United have lost their most creative central midfielder in the form of Paul Pogba and Milinkovic-Savic is better suited to replace the French international at Old Trafford.
Retired footballer, Paul Merson, thinks that the 27-year-old is a top quality player. He stated (The Daily Star):
“Savic is a lovely player. A really top-drawer player. The way he played for Lazio last season I personally think he is the best midfield player in Italy.”
“I know Manchester United have been linked with him in the past, but why there isn’t a queue of clubs lining up to buy the Serbian, I do not know.”
Ten Hag obviously prefers De Jong because the Dutch midfielder was highly impressive under his guidance at Ajax. However, the 25-year-old’s form with Barcelona has been inconsistent and he does not want to move to Old Trafford.
In such a scenario, Man Utd must push to finally sign Sergej Milinkovic-Savic? What do you think?