De Ligt: ‘Juve have the best defenders’

Ajax sensation Matthijs de Ligt said Juventus have some of the “best defenders in the world. I could join them, but there are other clubs interested too.”

The Dutch defender is still only 19 years old, but already a key figure for both his club and the Netherlands, with Barcelona and Juve bidding for his signature.

He’ll be up close and personal with the Bianconeri in the Champions League quarter-finals and sat down for an interview with Tuttosport.

Ajax sensation Matthijs de Ligt said Juventus have some of the “best defenders in the world. I could join them, but there are other clubs interested too.”

The Dutch defender is still only 19 years old, but already a key figure for both his club and the Netherlands, with Barcelona and Juve bidding for his signature.

He’ll be up close and personal with the Bianconeri in the Champions League quarter-finals and sat down for an interview with Tuttosport.

“Juventus are a great team. We believe in our chances of qualifying for the Champions League semi-finals because we are young and have less pressure on our shoulders.”

They already knocked out Real Madrid and Juve could miss star man Cristiano Ronaldo due to injury.

Cristiano Ronaldo is one of the best players in the world and Juventus are stronger with him, but on the other hand it’d be fascinating to face off with him. I already played against Ronaldo at international level and it was tough, but I have fond memories, as it was personally a positive game. Plus we’ve got Tadic, our own CR7.”

De Ligt admits he is a fan of Italian football and agrees when Giorgio Chiellini and Leonardo Bonucci are said to provide a Master’s degree in defending.

“I really like Chiellini, as he is one of the best defenders in the world. I also appreciate Bonucci, so between them they are among the best centre-backs in Europe.

“For a young player like me, they are both examples to be inspired by. I am pleased with comparisons to Alessandro Nesta and Jaap Stam, as they were top players, but I have a long way to go in order to reach their level.

“Nesta was a fantastic defender and I also watch videos of Franco Baresi and Paolo Maldini. The Italian school of defending was always the best.”

De Ligt was asked if he could therefore soon join Chiellini and Bonucci in Turin?

“It could be, but there are other clubs interested too. We’ll see at the right moment, but now I am focused on Ajax and not my future. My agent Mino Raiola is taking care of that.

“I met Raiola in January 2017 and he said he wanted me with him because he admired me and had a lot of faith in my potential. I already knew of his important reputation, thought about if for a bit and then accepted. I am very happy with my decision.”