The 21 year-old Dutch centre back that many label as the best young defender in the world makes the move to Barcelona just a year after signing for Juventus. Many are aware of his already extraordinary career, being named captain of Ajax in 2017 at just 17 becoming youngest in their history! Also youngest in CL KO at 19 years!
Juventus paid over £65 million plus £9m in add-ons for his services, despite interest from every other super club including FCB, he said. “I knew the style here would make me a more complete player.”
No trophies for Juventus in 2019/20, included a SF exit in the CL and finally surrendering their 8 year dominance of Serie A. This paved the way for de Ligt to get the move many thought would happen last year around.
Matthijs de Ligt – It’s a dream to be a Barcelona player! I’m not going to say last year was a failure because learnt a lot and I’m proud to have worn the Juventus colours, but Barca showed their desire to have me and so I spoke to my agent about the possibilities and I have to thank him.
I haven’t seen Frenkie (de jong) yet but we continued to speak all last season, it’s so nice to have a close friend here so I can settle quickly.
I’m 21 and I have play with Ronaldo and now have the chance to play with Lionel Messi, I am lost for words!
Borja Fornas -
I’m delighted. I think it’s clear to everyone we wanted to refresh the squad with a young talent player and that’s what we have here. Of course we would have like the deal to happen earlier so he could be part of pre-season, but it doesn’t always work like that and I’m sure he’ll be fine.
– It’s time to go mate.
– 6 seasons he spent here and was a very important player under Valverde, but 32 now and it’s the right time to move on.
– Joined in 2018, not quite got the Barca DNA but a workhorse and gave his all for the cause. Plus a profit made on the Chilean.
– Part of the youth setup before moving to Valencia in 2007 where he improved every year and returned to Barca in 2012 for £12m. The move paid off with 6 league titles, 4 Copa del Rey’s, 3 Supercopa’s, Club World cup and the Champions League. One of the hardest sales to finalise but the decline is clear, and the squad needs a shake to push the club back to the top. A good deal all round.
– For £62m he joins the club that he scored ‘that goal’ against back in 2017! The La Masia product made his way into the Barca line-up in 201, but it wasn’t until 15/16 under Luis Enrique where he found his place. After the departure of Dani Alves Roberto was deemed suitable to take that position, does a lot of running and that 95th minute goal vs PSG will never be forgotten!
– An integral part of the Barcelona defence for the first 2 seasons of his career. 2016/17 and 2017/18 he played 25 league games; this was cut to 14 in 2018/19 due to several major injuries to his left knee. He has never quite been the same since then, but at 26 the French World Cup winner still has chance to live up to his huge potential, but he will be doing that in Manchester.
– Spent the last couple of years on loan after a torn cruciate ligament in his right knee vs Roma in 2015 left him out for the season. After a successful loan at Inter 17/18 he looked to break back into the packed Barca midfield but in November 2018, he broke his left cruciate ligament, which signalled the end of his Barca career.