Barcelona News: “De Jong made a mistake by joining Barcelona,” claims former Blaugrana manager
What is the story?
Former Barcelona and Manchester United manager Louis van Gaal has made a bold statement regarding Dutch superstar Frenkie de Jong’s switch to the Catalan giants from Ajax. According to the veteran manager, the youngster has made a “mistake” by choosing Barcelona over other clubs.
In case you didn’t know….
De Jong emerged as one of the most improved players this campaign as he was one of the main reasons behind Ajax’s sensational run to the Champions League semi-finals. The Netherlands international also played a key role in Ajax's domestic double this season. The dynamic midfield sensation has caught the eyes of several football pundits and fans with his sensational displays in the middle of the park.
Barcelona secured the signing of the Dutchman in the winter transfer window in a move worth €75 million plus add-ons, with De Jong scheduled to move to the Camp Nou this summer. The 22-year-old had several options to chose from, including the likes of Paris Saint-Germain and Manchester City, before he signed for the Catalan giants.
The heart of the matter
Van Gaal believes there were better options available for De Jong, who has made a mistake by joining Barcelona.
"In my opinion, De Jong could have chosen better.
"I think it will be difficult for him there. Not only because he'll have a different role there, but because he'll be competing with others to make the starting eleven.
“De Jong is a very good player, but so is Ivan Rakitic, and five years ago when I was at Manchester United, I wanted to sign Arturo Vidal.
"As a player you always have to choose a club where you can play.
“The question is, does he have this assured at Barcelona, we'll have to wait and see, I hope so because at that age you have to play every game."
Van Gaal also feels that Barcelona’s Champions League debacle will be a blessing for De Jong as changes are expected in the squad.
"He's lucky that Barcelona were knocked out in the semi-finals [of the Champions League] because the status of the club is different and there will be different players.”
De Jong and Netherlands will face England in the semi-finals of UEFA Nations League on the 6th of June.