​Barcelona are desperate for Ajax defender Matthijs de Ligt to choose a 'sporting project' over economic gain, amid concerns they can only offer half the money of other suitors. 

It has long been mooted that de Ligt would join fellow Ajax academy graduate and Netherlands international Frenkie de Jong at Barça this summer, but the negotiations have been complicated by superagent Mino Raiola's financial demands and economic pressure from elsewhere. 


It is understood that the centre back is still keen to join La Blaugrana, but with their offers amounting to just half of some of the others from Europe's elite sides, there remains a level of uncertainty.

According to reports from Catalan publication ​Sport, the Spanish champions were confident they had the deal sewn up at the start of April, but that was before the Amsterdam side went on their historic journey to the Champions League semi-finals, in which the teenager ​garnered widespread acclaim.

Understandably, this has dramatically increased the asking price for de Ligt's services, with Raiola especially keen to maximise the player's value. However, Raiola is not the stumbling block that some outlets have reported, with his commission fee (estimated to be in the range of €8m-€10m) not as damaging as his pure demands for his client.

Matthijs de Ligt

Barça have attempted to rectify their economic shortcomings - which are crippled by an unparalleled current wage bill of €500m per season - by assuring the Dutchman of a starting berth in the team. 

But, although he is sufficiently convinced of the project in Catalonia, his attentions have been caught by the big money offers from elsewhere. Suitors of the 19-year-old have included Liverpool, ​Manchester United, Manchester City, Juventus and Real Madrid, though it is unclear as of yet which sides are making these gigantic offers. 

Despite these financial rewards, de Ligt is still enamoured with the Spanish side, and would much rather they bow to the pressure and add a couple more financial flourishes to the deal so he can sort out his future.

However, it is now understood that ​Barcelona are unwilling to kowtow to these demands, with the club now asserting that they will not change the terms that they felt were agreed in April. 

There have been some claims that this stance could change should Ernesto Valverde's side lose the Copa del Rey final to Valencia, but for now the ball is firmly in de Ligt's court.