Manchester United are reportedly lining up a move for Juventus centre-back Matthijs de Ligt this summer, as Erik ten Hag looks to oversee a defensive overhaul at Old Trafford.
According to reports in Italy (via Daily Star), United consider the Juventus man their main centre-back target this summer, with ten Hag unsurprisingly a big fan of the defender after their time working together at Ajax.
The report also claims that Juventus are unlikely to want to sell the Netherlands international and makes reference to his release clause, which currently stands at £106m, which could perhaps rule out any United move for him.
However, other reports have claimed that the 24-year-old wants any new contract with the Old Lady to include a more realistic release clause, while he has also spoken out about Juventus’ disappointing fourth-place finishes in the last two seasons.
De Ligt is well-known to ten Hag, having captained Ajax during their memorable run to the Champions League semi-final in 2019.
The centre-back would make 11 appearances in the competition, averaging a superb 7.17 rating from WhoScored for his performances, which emphasises his ability to play at the very top.
With ten Hag also linked with reunions with Frenkie de Jong and Jurrien Timber, it seems clear that the new United boss will make use of his Ajax connections this summer as he looks to lead a revolution at United.
De Ligt earned high praise from former Juventus centre-back Andrea Barzagli last year, as he said:
“De Ligt is a modern defender who likes physical contact, has incredible potential and a strong professionalism. He has been under pressure since he was very young, yet he is always calm.”
Considering United’s defensive woes last season, which saw them concede more than Burnley, Brighton and Brentford in the top-flight, signing a top-class defender to partner Raphael Varane should be a top priority for ten Hag this summer.
At just 22-years-old, de Ligt would also be a great investment for the future, as he could easily be a key man at Old Trafford for the next decade, so if a deal can be done, then United should do everything they can to sign him.
The new manager would absolutely adore him.