As previously reported, Barcelona will need to explicitly tell de Jong he’s not wanted and must leave, and Chelsea has asked for guarantees if they move the saga won’t drag on. Unlike Manchester, they will get player buy-in early if things progress.
Barca wants Bernardo Silva and needs the de Jong transfer fee and squad space to make that happen.
On record, and only two days ago, Joan Laporta denied de Jong was offered to Chelsea when he met Todd Boehly and reiterated he will “do his best” to keep him at Barca. But without a significant pay cut, and due to the Silva interest, an exit remains more likely.
Thomas Tuchel is very much driving the Chelsea interest. Boehly again backed his manager and tried to pull off an ambitious signing. Won’t be easy but Chelsea now exploring.
I’m m told Chelsea has monitored de Jong’s situation for quite some time and initiated talks because they now believe there is an urgency by Barca to sell.
De Jong himself is starting to realize his game-time will be even more limited. Xavi has spoken of using him as a center-back yet Jules Kounde has just come in, too.
Meanwhile, Laporta called Silva “a very good player” and Barcelona told MCFC to expect an offer soon. More below from Laporta on de Jong, Chelsea, and Silva from late last week in New York.
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