The Dutch defender had his pick of Europe’s top clubs last summer, with PSG too excited, but he asserts that Italy is the best place for him.
Matthijs de Ligt had the choice of Europe’s top clubs in the summer of 2019 and remains convinced he made the perfect choice in selecting Juventus over Barcelona and Paris Saint-Germain.
The Dutch defender hasn’t appreciated the smoothest of rides since swapping the comforting surrounds of existence from the Eredivisie for the pressure cooker of Serie A.
Having become the club captain in Ajax whilst still in his teens and established a reputation as one of the hottest prospects in world soccer, big things were expected of De Ligt at Italy.
He’s confronted the strange question of his form this year, together with the 20-year-old centre-half believed to still have much to learn.
De Ligt admits as much and asserts that Turin is the ideal location for his development.
The choice was there for him to go for Barca or PSG last summer, but the Bianconeri are thought of as the ideal team to unlock the possible which still exists at a former winner of the prestigious Golden Boy award.
Explaining the major career call he made when picking to leave Amsterdam, De Ligt told Ziggo Sport:”I’d supplies last summer from Juventus, PSG and Barcelona, so I researched the various options and in the end of the day reasoned I could grow faster at Juve.
“They have a certain style and I knew being here will make me a more complete player.”
De Ligt admits that his standards have dipped at times in his debut effort with Juve, but he has lots of experienced heads around him ready to pass priceless words of wisdom.
He added on his first experience beyond this Netherlands: “There are more eyes on you and people expect a fantastic deal, all which is new compared to my time in Ajax.
“I believe that I have done well in every game since the beginning of November and I’m happy that the club has faith in me.
“I had been on the bench for some time and talked it over with the trainer. I then had that issue with my shoulder and then a groin strain, so I could not train.
“The trainer [Maurizio Sarri] told me quite clearly:’Calm down, we want you further along in the season and in your best shape, therefore there is no rush.’
“I had to learn the language, as in the beginning, it was only me and Aaron Ramsey who could not speak Italian. We spoke English, so spent plenty of time together.
“[Giorgio] Chiellini also speaks English and he helped me a fantastic deal. It was tough at first, when we sat around the table and everybody spoke Italian, but I took classes together with my girlfriend.”
De Ligt has taken in 26 appearances for Juventus across all competitions this year, with the intention being to help them chase down another Serie A title and Champions League crown.