Manchester United are likely to submit the best offer for Barcelona midfielder Frenkie de Jong, according to reports.
The Red Devils are set for a busy summer as they prepare to rejuvenate their squad ahead of Erik ten Hag's debut season at the helm.
Midfield is one area that is in particular need of strengthening, with Paul Pogba and Nemanja Matic both set to depart when their contracts expire on June 30.
The Netherlands international thrived under Ten Hag at Ajax (opens in new tab) and would no doubt consider a reunion with his former manager.
According to Spanish publication Sport (opens in new tab), United are in pole position to sign De Jong and are expected to make the "strongest bid".
Barcelona value De Jong at around £76m but they would be willing to listen to offers of £67.5m for the Dutchman.
United will therefore have to spend big to prise the 25-year-old away from the Camp Nou, where he is under contract until 2026.
It is not yet known how much money Ten Hag will have to spend this summer, nor whether United would be willing to spend such a significant fee on De Jong.
Meanwhile Barcelona manager Xavi Hernandez has admitted that financial considerations will determine the player's future.
"For me, he is a very important player," he said last weekend.
"He is almost always been a starter, except when I have rotated. He is a fundamental player, but then there is the financial situation of the club.
"Not just with Frenkie, I mean in general. He's a player I like a lot, but we'll see how the situation is."
"The circumstances of the club dictate [what we do]. I play an important part in decision making. From there, we depend on the financial situation.
"In a few days we have to know where we are, to be able to plan for next season."
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Greg Lea is a freelance football journalist who's filled in wherever FourFourTwo needs him since 2014. He became a Crystal Palace fan after watching a 1-0 loss to Port Vale in 1998, and once got on the scoresheet in a primary school game against Wilfried Zaha's Whitehorse Manor (an own goal in an 8-0 defeat).
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