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Man Utd: Frenkie de Jong pursuit confirmed by Richard Arnold, who says Barcelona talks ongoing

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Richard Arnold has said ‘money is not a consideration’ in Manchester United’s pursuit of Frenkie de Jong as he takes aim at Ed Woodward’s transfer handling.

United have identified the Dutch midfielder as their No.1 target for the summer as new manager Erik ten Hag rebuilds the club and negotiations with Barcelona are underway.

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And in a sensational exchange with a group of United supporters in a Cheshire pub, the chief executive suggested Ten Hag would be given a substantial budget to launch his project at Old Trafford.

After criticizing his predecessor Woodward and the way United had ‘burnt money’ in disastrous market forays in recent years, Arnold hinted he would leave transfers and recruitment to others in the market. hierarchy rather than replicating the hands-on approach of its predecessor.

Manchester United chief executive Richard Arnold met supporters in a Cheshire pub, where he criticized predecessor Ed Woodward and the waste of bad signings

Arnold says United are trying to secure a deal for Barcelona and Netherlands star Frenkie de Jong

Arnold says United are trying to secure a deal for Barcelona and Netherlands star Frenkie de Jong

On De Jong, who Barcelona value at £69m, Arnold told fans: “Money is not a consideration for who we want.”

“It’s that the manager wants him, that they’ve actually done the work to see if he’s a great player.”

‘Is it £100m or £200m? I do not know. Get who the fuck you want.

‘Do you want me to buy the players? This means nothing to you ?

According to the Twitter of one of the fans who spoke to Arnold, the United chief also said: “United officials are in Barcelona to complete the deal for De Jong.

“As a club we are doing everything we can to get the deal done, I’ve been up for days trying to get it done.” The money is there, but there are obstacles that I cannot say.

New manager Erik ten Hag has identified ex-Ajax player De Jong as his No.1 summer target

New manager Erik ten Hag has identified ex-Ajax player De Jong as his No.1 summer target

Arnold (right) took charge of United following Ed Woodward's departure in February and criticized his predecessor's approach during the secretly filmed conversation with fans.

Arnold (right) took charge of United following Ed Woodward’s departure in February and criticized his predecessor’s approach during the secretly filmed conversation with fans.

A Manchester United spokesperson said: “Richard has heard that a group of fans have met at a pub near his home.

“He went to meet them, offered them all a drink, listened to their views and explained what the club was doing to achieve success on the pitch, improve the stadium and enhance engagement with supporters.”

Ten Hag has identified 25-year-old De Jong as his main summer target to solve the defensive midfield problem that has plagued United for several seasons now. The pair worked together successfully at Ajax.

De Jong is seen by the new manager as a key player in the style of football he wants to bring to Old Trafford, but De Jong has made it clear he wants to stay at Barcelona.

In a video leaked online, the United CEO tells fans the club has

In video leaked online, United CEO tells fans the club ‘burnt money’

Ten Hag would like the majority of this summer’s transfer budget to go to De Jong before moving on to other areas of the squad that needed to be strengthened.

United have offered £56million for the Dutchman but Barcelona value him more, suggesting a second offer could potentially take place this week.

The fact that Arnold’s comments about ‘money not being a consideration’ have come to light may well hamper United in their efforts to bring down Barcelona’s asking price for De Jong.

They hope Barcelona will be pushed into the sale due to their perilous financial situation, with debts nearing £1billion.

The Catalan club must submit their accounts to LaLiga by the end of June, which will determine spending limits for next season and, therefore, which players need to be offloaded to raise or release money.

Arnold got candid with the group of United fans in secretly filmed conversations held in a pub near his Cheshire home.

Not only did he criticize the colossal Woodward-era waste of the transfer market on players such as £89million Paul Pogba, but he described the last 12 months as a “fuckin’ nightmare”.

United could only finish sixth in the Premier League and have failed in all other competitions after sacking Ole Gunnar Solskjaer last November and replacing him with caretaker manager Ralf Rangnick.

In an honest assessment of United’s recent history, Arnold told the group of supporters on Saturday: “We’ve spent a billion pounds on players, more than anyone else in Europe.”

Barcelona want £69m for midfielder De Jong, who is reluctant to leave Camp Nou

Barcelona want £69m for midfielder De Jong, who is reluctant to leave Camp Nou

“I’m not happy with where we are. It’s not easy for me and I’m worried about how we’re going to sort this out for the future. What happened is that we burned money.

“You can’t go to our training ground and say ‘show me where the billion pounds is’ because we haven’t spent money well historically.”

“Last year was a fucking nightmare. There was hate every game. We spent a huge amount of money.

It is understood that a group of United fans visited the area where Arnold lives and upon hearing about it he agreed to meet them and try to express his views.

United were hit by anti-Glazer protests at Old Trafford last season and Arnold suggested to supporters he spoke to that it was best for them to stop.

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