The Dutch midfielder’s game time this season has been limited mostly to appearances from the substitutes bench.
De Jong has made 10 appearances in all competitions this campaign, scoring one goal.
Four of those appearances were in the starting XI, and it is a contrast to the regular starting role he was handed under Xavi Hernandez last season.
Barca’s current midfield three appears to be Gavi, Pedri, and Sergio Busquets. De Jong is now becoming dissatisfied with the situation.
The Dutchman was the talking point of the summer transfer window amidst links to Premier League giants Manchester United.
The Red Devils made the midfielder their top transfer priority but the player’s preference was always to remain at Barcelona.
However, his lack of a starting role this season may now see him consider an exit if the situation does not change.
Xavi does not view him as a replacement for Busquets who is in the final year of his contract. De Jong wants to succeed at Barca but not from the substitutes bench.
United have kept in contact with the Blaugrana over De Jong and the midfielder knows that at Old Trafford he will be at the center of Erik ten Hag’s project.
The Dutch tactician coached De Jong at Ajax before he moved to Camp Nou in 2019 for £77.4 million.
He has four years remaining on his current contract with Barca but speculation continues to grow over his future in Catalonia.
United’s summer pursuit of Barcelona’s De Jong
It was the longest-running transfer saga in recent memory after news broke in early May that United were interested in signing De Jong.
The saga took several twists and turns and was on-and-off again before the transfer window slammed shut and the midfielder remained a Barcelona player.
The Red Devils had even reportedly agreed on an €85 million (£74 million) deal with Barca for the Dutchman to arrive at Old Trafford.
However, De Jong made it known loud and clear that he was not looking to leave the Catalan giants.
He said as speculation grew over a potential move to United (via ESPN):
“I prefer to stay with Barcelona.”
“Barcelona is just my dream club. Also from a young age. I just said it too. I’ve never regretted my choice despite the fact that I had hoped for more in terms of prizes than I’ve achieved so far.”
However, as he continues to be a bench player this season, De Jong may just be reconsidering his stance on remaining at the Camp Nou.