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Manchester United and Real Madrid have emerged as contenders to sign Ajax midfield Frenkie de Jong, who is also wanted by Tottenham and Barcelona, according to reports in the Netherlands.

De Jong, who broke into Ajax’s first-team during the 2016/17 season, is considered one of the most talented young players in Europe and looks set to leave Ajax sooner rather than later.

Spurs have been heavily linked with a move for the 21-year-old in recent weeks. The Londoners are surely on the lookout for a long-term replacement for Mousa Dembele, who has entered the final 12 months of his contract.

A report in the Dutch publication De Telegraaf reiterates Tottenham’s interest in De Jong, adding that Barcelona remain keen – the Nou Camp has been mooted as De Jong’s most likely destination.

However, De Telegraaf also claims Real Madrid and Manchester United have entered race to sign the Holland international, who made his senior debut for his country earlier this year.

We might now see a tug of war between some of Europe’s biggest clubs over De Jong, and the spending power of Barcelona, Madrid and United will make it hard for Spurs to compete.

It is believed Madrid are willing to pay £71 million to sign De Jong, which is way out of Tottenham’s budget.

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