A year after failing to secure his services, Manchester United want Matthijs de Ligt again, to help the Dutch youngster escape his poor Juventus period.
I don’t think any of us expected Matthijs de Ligt’s career at Juventus to go the way that it has so far. If you take a look at the Bianconeri squad, I think you’d consider him their 4th choice centre-back at the moment, behind stalwarts Bonucci and Chiellini, and even behind Merih Demiral, the young Turkish defender who has outshone De Ligt, although he did pick up a serious injury not too long ago.
His inability to adjust to Italian football this year comes as a surprise. He is still young and came from a non-top 5 league, but De Ligt’s performances in the Champions League last season showed that his physical and mental maturity was impressive, and well beyond his age.
For this reason, many of Europe’s top clubs chased his signature, including Manchester United (if you still consider them a top club, that is!).
Now, with the Dutchman struggling at Juventus, Manchester United are reportedly looking to offer him an escape route, as they aim to fix up their right centre-back position.
This deal would be an extremely difficult one to pull off, and it might come down to the player’s preference. Despite his poor form this year, Juventus will not be blind to De Ligt’s potential, and they won’t let him go easily.
The connection with Mino Raiola, who is De Ligt’s agent, is likely what Manchester United are banking on to get this deal done. Another Raiola client, Manchester United’s wantaway midfielder Paul Pogba, could be used as bait in the deal.
The player’s agent has made it no secret that his client wishes for a return to Juventus. This could potentially open up an avenue for De Ligt to move the other way.
Pogba is a great player, but Manchester United’s midfield is as strong as it has been in a long time with Fred, McTominay, and Fernandes all playing well. A player like De Ligt would be of far greater use to them, especially in the long-run.