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Why Man City should make Matthijs de Ligt their top priority in summer

Ajax centre back Matthijs de Ligt is one of the brightest prospects in world football. The young Dutchman has caught the attention of a lot of big clubs and the ESPN reports that Manchester City and Barcelona are set to go head to head for the signature of the 2018 Golden Boy award winner. After missing out on another Ajax prodigy in Frenkie de Jong to Barcelona, Manchester City look to take revenge on the Spanish champions by sealing this deal.

Matthijs De Ligt, 19, has been a mainstay in the Ajax team and has played every minute in the Eredivisie and the Champions League this season. Standing at over 6ft 1in and with above 90% passing accuracy as well as the ability to pull off long passes, he would take his game to the next level under Pep Guardiola.

Pep Guardiola
Pep Guardiola

With skipper Vincent Kompany is not getting any younger, Nicolas Otamendi is reportedly being looked at by Barcelona and Eliaquim Mangala remains out of favour, City should make a move for the young defender. De Ligt’s consistent performances at such a young age have skyrocketed his value and he won’t be cheap.

His compatriot Frenkie de Jong signed a deal with the Catalan giants for a transfer fee of 75 million and the young centre-back will most likely cost the same if not more.

Former Manchester United legend and current Ajax CEO Edwin van der Sar has ruled out a move in January and was quoted by ESPN saying

No, no, no. That’s a no. We’re not going to sell a player halfway through the season. No way. If you have financial difficulties you might look at it, but for us no.”

But a move away from Amsterdam looks likely in the summer.

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Matthijs de Ligt

The youngster is the first defender to win the Golden Ball award and is also Ajax’s youngest ever captain. Matthijs De Ligt was named in the 2017/18 Europa League squad of the season and is also the recipient of Sjaak Swart award in 2016 and Marco van Basten award in 2018. Despite the attention from the world and speculation about his future, the 19-year-old hasn’t been a bit distracted and has been brilliant for Ajax.

Read more: Manchester City should go all out to sign this 28-year-old from Schalke to provide cover for Fernandinho before the January window slams shut

With Barcelona keeping close tabs and other interests from the big boys certain over the next six months, Manchester City should move in quickly and wrap up the deal to bring De Ligt to the Etihad and help him fulfil his massive potential.

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