Barcelona Transfer News: Top defender move was finalised last month in Monte Carlo
What's the story?
According to Spanish outlet AS, Barcelona are close to finalising a deal for Ajax defender Matthijs de Ligt. The publication claims that the deal in question was, in fact, agreed in April itself in Monte Carlo.
In case you didn't know...
Matthijs de Ligt has emerged as one of the hottest properties in European football at the moment. As such, the Dutch defender has no shortage of suitors waiting in line to acquire his services.
However, according to reports, Barcelona are rumoured to pip the likes of Liverpool and Manchester United to the Ajax skipper's signature. The Catalans have been chasing de Ligt for a long time, having already signed his compatriot Frenkie de Jong in January.
Ajax sporting director Edwin Van der Sar also confirmed that this could be the youngster's last campaign with the Dutch outfit. He said,
"For players like De Ligt, it may be the last time to win something with Ajax. De Jong will go to Barcelona, De Ligt has the opportunity to go to England or Spain."
Ajax will reportedly demand a fee in the range of £65m for their prized asset.
The heart of the matter
While speaking to Club de la Mitjanit television show on Esport 3, Dutch journalist Oriol Domènech claimed that the deal to sign Matthijs de Ligt was brokered by his agent Mino Raiola on April 12 in Monte Carlo.
The 19-year-old's arrival to Nou Camp could also signal an end for French defender Samuel Umtiti, who has seen his playing time being limited due to a recurring knee injury this season.
Barcelona will travel to Eibar for their last league game of the season this weekend as Ajax take on De Graffschap tomorrow.