Juventus win race for Matthijs de Ligt

Juventus have won the race to sign Ajax captain Matthijs de Ligt with Barcelona admitting defeat in the pursuit, say reports.

El Mundo Deportivo cite the highly reputable Sky Sport Italia as claiming that the Bianconeri have agreed a deal and will pay the player an annual salary of €12m.

The 19-year-old has been the captain of the Amsterdam-based club for over a year and has starred for club and country.

Widely regarded as one of the best upcoming talents in world football, the central defender is set to command a €75m fee from Ajax.

His rejection of Barcelona was in spite of Blaugrana club president Josep Maria Bartomeu travelling to Amsterdam to convince the player, as he had successfully done with Frenkie de Jong.

Juventus and Bayern Munich are also both said to have been in the running, while a lack of first-team opportunities at Barca has previously been cited as an issue.

De Ligt starred in his side’s run to the Champions League semi-finals, heading in the winner in the quarter-finals at Juventus before also netting in the last four against Tottenham.

Tags Matthijs de Ligt