Frenkie de Jong attacked outside Barcelona training ground
Barcelona midfielder Frenkie de Jong was the target of verbal abuse on his way to work on Wednesday.
As the 25-year-old approached Barcelona’s training facility, a man outside was filmed shouting: ‘Lower your salary, b****!’
The ugly scene came amid what is turning into a high-profile showdown between the club and De Jong over his contract.
De Jong is under contract at Camp Nou until June 2026, having signed a lucrative extension in October 2020.
According Athleticisma condition of this deal, which was signed during the COVID pandemic, was that De Jong’s salary would be temporarily reduced during the 2020/21 and 2021/22 seasons.
The total amount of deferred payments is said to be €18m, which was to be paid to De Jong during the last four years of his contract, starting this summer.
But Barca no longer intend to pay that amount to De Jong.
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De Jong’s new contract was signed shortly before the resignation of former club president Josep Bartomeu and the entire former board.
Club figures are now suggesting Bartomeu illegally signed De Jong’s contract extension and it should be rescinded, reinstating his previous contract, which was signed in January 2019, includes a lower salary and is set to expire in June 2024 .
Apart from trying to avoid paying De Jong the full amount of his controversial contract, Barca are reportedly keen to sell him to bolster the club’s precarious financial situation.
Manchester United had a bid worth £72m for De Jong accepted earlier this summer, according to sky sportsbut the player snubbed the move.
De Jong’s reluctance to join United was partly because he wanted to play Champions League football – something not currently on offer at Old Trafford.
But, as Sky report, Chelsea – who qualified for the Champions League group stage this season – are now ready to match United’s offer of £72million.