Barcelona wanted him, but in the end Matthijs de Ligt is signing for Juventus.
The 19-year-old is moving to Turin and there are several reasons why he didn’t join his former Ajax teammate Frenkie de Jong at the Camp Nou.
1. His wages
Barcelona didn’t want to reach the kind of salary being offered to the player by Juventus.
His agent Mino Raiola was asking for 12 million euros per year for his client and Barcelona said no.
2. Raiola’s commission
It’s never easy to deal with Raiola, especially when he wants a cut of the transfer fee, and the Catalan club weren’t willing to pay the amount he was looking for.
3. There are already enough centre-backs
Barcelona weren’t chasing De Ligt out of necessity, as they already have several options in that position with Gerard Pique, Clement Lenglet, Samuel Umtiti and Jean-Clair Todibo.
The fact they didn’t absolutely need to sign a centre-back meant that they could ultimately say no to his and his agent’s demands.
4. His room for improvement
The fact that some in the club felt that De Ligt still has several aspects of his game to improve on also led to his move elsewhere.
5. The player’s desire
In the case of De Jong, he was very keen to come to Barcelona and all those at the club were enthused by his eagerness.
De Ligt, on the other hand, wasn’t as committed to the idea of joining Barcelona, and ultimately didn’t.
6. The potential Neymar signing
There’s not enough money to sign everyone, so the fact that the possibility to sign Neymar has arisen also halted Barcelona’s pursuit of the Dutchman.
7. Juventus’ perseverance
The 2018 Golden Boy award was given out to the defender in Turin and that was when the first contact was made.
From there, Juventus have been persistent and, ultimately, they got their man.