The Dutch star was wanted in England and concedes the intensity there does make the competition slightly superior to Spain’s top flight
Barcelona midfielder Frenkie de Jong believes the Premier League is at a “slightly higher level” than La Liga.
The former Ajax prodigy moved to Spain over the summer and has quickly cemented his spot in Ernesto Valverde’s side.
The 22-year-old has already made 18 La Liga appearances scoring once and contributing two assists with the Catalans currently top of the domestic competition.
Having acclimatised so well to Spain’s top flight, De Jong has observed that the Premier League appears to be of a marginally better level.
“I used to think that La Liga was the strongest football league in the world. You could see their dominance in European Cup competitions,” De Jong told the Mirror.
“The Spanish clubs always progressed a long way and often grabbed the main trophies, the Champions League and Europa League.
“But the Premier League has gained power over the last few years.
“When it comes to pure skills, La Liga is better. But because of the sheer intensity, the English competition is at a slightly higher level.”
De Jong could well have been lining up in the Premier League this season had Manchester City followed up on Pep Guardiola’s interest in the midfielder.
Netherlands manager Ronald Koeman revealing that the City boss was a big admirer of De Jong’s last season.
“I had discussed two names with Pep for a long while – and those names were Frenkie de Jong and Matthijs de Ligt,” Koeman said.
“Pep was wild about the type of midfielder Frenkie is. He wanted to know all about him.
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“Frenkie is now one of the best midfielders in the world. His biggest quality? He has the ability to wait one of two more seconds before he decides what he is going to do with the ball. And then suddenly he gives a pass, which is beautiful and makes everyone think, ‘My God!’”
While he might have a few big-name admirers abroad, Valverde recently stressed he’s expecting plenty more from De Jong in La Liga this season.
“Frenkie de Jong covers a lot of ground and he is playing well,” he said. “However, he still has more to give, especially inside the opponents’ box.”