Barcelona are braced for one of the best transfer windows in recent history and one of their prime targets has apparently decided on his future.
Reliable Spanish football journalist, Guillem Balague, has revealed that Barcelona are set to land Matthijs de Ligt. The Ajax academy graduate is being linked to a roast of the European elite. But Manchester City and Barcelona were ahead of the others.
Now, Balague has confirmed that Manchester City have dropped out of the race, placing the Catalans in the driver’s seat.
“Barcelona are very confident”
“Manchester City do not want Matthijs De Ligt,” Balague said on his YouTube channel. “Manchester City feel that Barcelona are at the forefront of the situation and willing to pay the £60m that Ajax want for him.Ajax do not want to do an auction for him, wherever he wants to go, he will go.And De Ligt has not made a decision but is very, very tempted by Barcelona. Bayern Munich and PSG also want him as well. But, at the moment, Barcelona are very confident.”
Barcelona President, Josep Maria Bartomeu, also confirmed that the future of the youngster has been sealed. But he has decided to speak about it when the right time comes. “There will be time to speak about him,” he said.“Each year the club has an interest in making signings and this summer will be the same. De Ligt, like the other best players, is on the table. He is a great player and a great centre-back. I know what will happen with him but it’s not the moment [to talk].”
De Ligt and Ajax calm
The player has remained clam and claims that the speculation doesn’t bother or affect him.
“Am I annoyed by the rumours? No. Bored? A little bit. But it doesn’t matter to me if there’s an article about where I should go or what I should do. It doesn’t matter, at all.”Matthijs de Ligt
Marc Overmars, Ajax’s Sporting director, insists he does not know about the Dutchman’s future. “I love Barcelona but I do not know what he (de Ligt) will do,” Overmars told TV3, as cited by Diario Sport.“He is incredible in what he brings us, to be our central defender and captain at his age, he has a huge future.”
Matthijs de Ligt looks like a once-in-a-generation talent. The youngster, still 19, has grown immensely, both mentally and physically. People who have seen him perform have not stopped waxing lyrical. De Ligt comes from the Johan Cruyff school of thought which fits perfectly with Barcelona’s philosophy. And considering the close working relationship between the two clubs, it wouldn’t be a surprise to anyone seeing the Dutchman wear the Blaugrana stripes.