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De Jong spoke to PSG and Man City before opting to join Barcelona

Frenkie de Jong has said he met Paris Saint-German coach Thomas Tuchel and Manchester City's Pep Guardiola before signing for Barcelona but chose to follow his dream of playing for the Liga champions.

Barca confirmed the signing of De Jong from Ajax on Wednesday in a deal worth an initial €75 million, with the Netherlands international joining at the end of the season on a five-year contract.

PSG and Man City remained in the hunt for De Jong's signature right until the end, with the French champions at one stage believing they would win the race.

However, Barca president Josep Maria Bartomeu travelled to Amsterdam twice in a week to ensure the deal was done.

De Jong, 21, said PSG's offer had been tempting but decided that he did not see his long-term future in France.

"Paris was one of the best options," he told Voetball. "They impressed me -- a good club, a good team, a good coach.

"I would have had the chance to play consistently and it could have been an advantage to go to Ligue 1, because there is still time to grow.

"Regarding the French league, though, I didn't have the feeling that I wanted to play there for 10 years.

"I went to Paris and to Manchester and I spoke with Tuchel and Guardiola. I didn't [speak to Barcelona coach Erntesto Valverde] but I have always dreamed of Barcelona, and La Liga has more quality.

"My choice is not a decision against PSG or Man City, but in favour of Barcelona. The challenge is huge."

De Jong said the chance to play alongside Lionel Messi, who he considers the world's best player, had also been a major factor in his decision.

Ajax ambassador Ronald de Boer said he felt Messi would enjoy playing with De Jong, telling Cadena Ser: "De Jong has Ajax DNA which is nearly the same as Barcelona DNA.

"He is intelligent, he always has good ideas, he never plays without thinking. Messi will fall in love with De Jong."


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