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The ‘Matthijs de Ligt to Barcelona’ Saga

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Every year, when the summer transfer window opens, the Spanish reports of de Ligt being linked to Barcelona resurfaces. Matthijs’ Instagram is filled with Barca fans comments – “come to Barcelona”. In this article, I have decided to explore the saga behind this whole scenario. Before we start, I would like my dramatic side to assure you that this is nothing less of a love triangle. A and B likes C, but C only likes A. So now, B can’t get over the fact that C chose A over B. Fill in the blanks, my dear readers.

The Acquisition of Matthijs de Ligt

In the summer of 2019, de Ligt was signed by Juventus on a five-year contract for a fee of €75 million. Barcelona and PSG were in the race as well. But the 21-year-old Dutch player chose Juventus to play in the country of defenders and learn from two of the best centre-backs in football. It seems that guilt and envy of losing de Ligt to Juventus still haunts the Barca fans and Spanish media.

The Pjanic-Arthur Swap

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According to Romeo Agresti, a year ago, Barcelona requested de Ligt to be included in a swap deal with Arthur, but Juventus gave them Pjanic instead. Was it one of the biggest scams in football transfers? A big bold YES. Just another Paratici masterclass, folks.

The Dutch Obsession

Many Dutch players have played for Barcelona. The dutch connection with the Catalan club started with Johan Cruyff. Since then, it is said to be believed that every homegrown talented dutch player is bound to Barca. Especially an ajax player. Well, it’s not a total lie since many dutch players dream to follow in the footsteps of Cruyff. But the case with Matthijs was different. In 2019 when Barca signed de Jong, they believed de Ligt was in their pocket, but their plans went south. And Juventus successfully signed one of the best defenders of our generation. Since then, many former Oranje players, dutch media, Barca fans and the Spanish media haven’t been able to digest this fact leading to their weird obsession to somehow get de Ligt to Barcelona.

To be honest, we can’t blame the fans entirely cause who doesn’t want to sign the best young defender in football, especially when your team’s backline is ageing.

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Where they go wrong?

It is totally fine to want a world-class player in your team. But to torment him with transfer questions in every interview is not justified. They even criticize him for his time at Juventus so far when he has been nothing but absolutely flawless. The media or the fans have no right to criticize a player’s choice about his career just because he didn’t do what they wanted.

Juventus’ Stance

The Bianconeri has made it pretty clear that de Ligt is untouchable. They want to keep him, and his future lies at Juventus. The black and white fans hope that he can go on to become a Juventus legend like Chiellini.

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De Ligt’s Perspective

Matthijs had no hesitation in showing his love for Juventus and his desire to stay. In an interview with ESPN, de Ligt said – “I am very happy at Juve. I feel like a fish in water.”

He also stated in conversation with Sky Italia (via Football-Oranje):

“For me, it is an honour to play for Juventus, and it will be an even greater honour to be captain. A dream. But that’s not important now.”

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To Conclude:

The 21-year-old defender is free to do whatever he wants, and he is certainly happy with his choices. Hence the rumours and baseless criticism are just part and parcel of a footballer’s life that does not affect him. We as fans can definitely ignore the false propaganda, but others need to retrospect if they are justified in forcing a narrative that does not exist.
While de Ligt is leaving no stones unturned to reassure the fans and the club about his future at Juventus, we, fans, love and support him in this journey. Our number 4 truly has the Juve spirit.

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