Matthijs de Ligt‘s name was very noticeably absent from the 28-man list of players headed to Austria for the first leg of Ajax’s preseason preparations, further fueling speculation that a transfer to Juventus is nearing completion.
[ TRANSFER RUMORS: Alderweireld to Roma, Haller to West Ham ]
Ajax announced the squad on Saturday with while the likes of fellow rising stars Donny van de Beek, David Neres and Nicolas Tagliafico also not included, though transfer rumors involving players not named De Ligt have been much fewer and farther between.
De Ligt, the captain and remaining crown-jewel prospect, has appeared headed for the exit door since for quite some time.
Juventus are reportedly ready to pay $84 million for De Ligt’s services, making him the second-most expensive defender in the history of transfers, behind only Liverpool’s Virgil Van Dijk.