Barcelona sporting director speaks out on futures of two Man Utd targets | Football

Frenkie de Jong has long been linked with a move to Old Trafford (Picture: Getty Images)

Barcelona sporting director Deco has ruled out summer exits for Frenkie De Jong or Ronald Araujo, despite both being linked with moves to Manchester United.

The Catalan giants are still in a perilous financial state, with La Liga cutting the club’s salary cap as a result, limiting them to spending £174.8m on wages.

If Barcelona want to sign any new players over the summer transfer window then they will have to sell some, but Deco says it will not be De Jong, Araujo or Robert Lewandowski who will be leaving.

The Dutch midfielder has long been linked with a move to Old Trafford while the Uruguayan defender has also been touted as a possible signing for the Red Devils but the former Barca star says neither move will be happening this year.

‘Nothing will happen to them [Araujo and De Jong],’ Deco told Movistar.

‘They have a contract and all the big clubs want to keep their best players and these are some of the best. They are important players for now and for the future.

‘They have earned the right to be here and the respect of the fans and everyone. We know where we want to go and we are counting on them.

Celta Vigo v FC Barcelona - LaLiga EA Sports

Ronald Araujo has been at Barcelona since 2018 (Picture: Getty Images)

‘He [Lewandowski] is a world-class reference. He has a great ability to score goals. I have seen very few players as professional and dedicated to football as him. He is a gift for us.’

Both De Jong and Araujo have been regulars in Xavi’s first team so far this season with the Dutchman making 26 appearances in all competitions and the Uruguayan 28.

Lewandowski has been crucial to the team, comfortably the side’s top-scorer with 18 goals in 35 appearances across all competitions.

Deportivo Alaves v FC Barcelona - LaLiga EA Sports

Deco insists Barcelona will not be losing players they want to keep hold of (Picture: Getty Images)

Whether these players leave the club or not it is set to be a summer of upheaval at the Camp Nou, with Xavi set to step aside as manager.

The club legend announced that he will depart and there has been no announcement yet on his replacement, with the likes of Hansi Flick, Rafael Marquez, Roebrto De Zerbi and Thomas Tuchel linked with the role.


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