One of the summer’s signature transfer sagas is over as Matthijs de Ligt has officially joined Juventus.
The club announced de Ligt on Thursday, and he signed a five-year deal a day after undergoing a medical in Turin.
The Guardian reports the deal is worth $84 million, with an annual salary in the neighborhood of $18 million that could rise to $27 million a year if add-ons and performance bonuses are met.
And there’s a good chance they will be. The 19-year-old Dutch prodigy helped lead Ajax to another Eredivisie title this past season, and they came within a whisper of the Champions League final, eliminating Juventus along the way. De Ligt is a complete center back, technically gifted with strength, pace and ball-playing ability.
He won the 2018 Golden Boy award, given to Europe’s top player under the age of 21, and landed a list that includes Lionel Messi, Wayne Rooney, Paul Pogba and Kylian Mbappe in doing so.
He now joins another superstar, Cristiano Ronaldo, in Juventus’ quest to win the Champions League for the first time since 1996. Juve has won the past eight Serie A titles and has its eyes on continental supremacy, having finished runners-up twice in the past five years.
Leonardo Bonucci and Giorgio Chiellini have anchored Juve’s traditionally stout defense in recent seasons, but they are 32 and 34, respectively, and de Ligt is the kind of generational talent that’s too good to pass up no matter how stacked you are at center back.
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