What’s the story?
Juventus’s new recruit, Matthijs de Ligt has revealed the reason why he decided against joining Barcelona and opted for the Italian giants instead. The Dutchman admitted that he would have liked to continue playing alongside Frenkie de Jong in Barcelona, but it was time to make a different decision.
In case you didn’t know
The Dutch prodigy completed his €75 million move from Ajax last week, becoming one of the most expensive defensive acquisition to be ever made in world football. De Ligt has penned a five-year contract with the current Serie A Champions, which is said to be worth a staggering €12 million a season.
However, the Netherlands international had been linked to a host of other European heavyweights, including the likes of Barcelona, Manchester United and Paris Saint-Germain, this summer. Although, the Catalan giants seemed to have had the upper hand in getting the defender on board for most of the summer, De Ligt ultimately decided against joining the Blaugrana after being convinced by the ongoing project at Turin.
The heart of the matter
Speaking to Voetbal International, recently, De Ligt has shed light on why he decided to snub Barcelona to join Juventus.
“A lot of people advised me to do that (sign for Barça) but I told them I had to analyze everything and see which option was best for me," he said as quoted by SPORT.
“Frenkie (de Jong) and I spoke a lot about what we were going to do. We were honest with each other. It would have been great if we had continued playing together but our careers shouldn't be dependent on the decision of the other.
"We both have our own career paths. I looked at all the pros and cons and marked down some things. In the end, you have to feel right about the club which convinces you the most. That's why I came to Juventus."
De Ligt has also dismissed all those reports of him not joining PSG because of money and explained that the money factor had nothing to do with his decision to join Juventus.
"How ridiculous. Money didn't play a part in my decision. Everyone who knows me, knows the truth. Mino (Raiola) is my agent and he took charge of the commerical side. But that only happens once I've made a sporting decision. Money was never the priority," he revealed.
Matthijs de Ligt and Juventus will take on Inter Milan on Wednesday at the Nanjing Olympic Sports Center Gymnasium in China in their second pre-season friendly.