Frenkie de Jong has been a regular starter for FC Barcelona since joining from Ajax Amsterdam in the summer of 2019. Considering most newcomers can take at least a year to adapt to their new environment and deal with the pressures of life at the Camp Nou, it would be fair to say that Frenkie’s progress so far has been positive.

While the young Dutch international has done fairly well so far, however, many Cules around the world expect him to take another step forward in coming matches. As we discussed in our latest episode at TheBarcelonaPodcast.com, it is now time for de Jong to increase his influence in Barca’s midfield.

Speaking to Marca, de Jong seemed ready for the challenge, both physically and mentally:

“I feel good. I did some training in the Netherlands to get in shape. It’s good to be back on the pitch now. I feel good, but not ready to play right now. But in a few weeks we’ll be ready to play again.”

“We haven’t seen each other for two or three months, which is a long time. Normally, when there are vacations or some other pause, the return is always good. And it usually only lasts three or four weeks. Now we are talking about almost three months.”

“It was really nice to see each other again. I missed the training sessions, my teammates, playing a little football. Also the rondos, which are a really nice part of the training sessions.”

“I think it was positive to train first individually, so that everyone could assess their own intensity a bit and assess how it felt physically before starting training with the group. And I think that everyone felt pretty good. It was a good pre-step.”

“I did some training in Holland to arrive well. It’s good to get back on the grass. I feel pretty good, although not well enough to face a game right now, but there are still a few weeks of training left. First we worked individually, now [we are working] with small groups and I hope that soon we will train with the whole team. In a few weeks we will be ready to play again.”

“Fans create a special atmosphere and everything is better with them. But we’ll have to play without them. Hopefully it’ll only be for this season and they will come back to the stadiums soon. Games will be more enjoyable with them.”

Frenkie de Jong was signed for €75M only a year ago but, if he can continue to grow into the midfield leader he seems destined to be, FC Barcelona fans will quickly forget about his price-tag and focus solely on his influence on the pitch.

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