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De Ligt joins Juventus in five-year €75m deal

ESPN FC's Matteo Bonetti and Steve Nicol debate whether or not Matthijs de Ligt makes Juventus the team to beat in the Champions League.
Julien Laurens believes Juventus got a "good deal" for Matthijs de Ligt when compared with the fees touted for other defenders this transfer window.

Juventus have completed the signing of Matthijs de Ligt from Ajax for €75 million making him the most expensive defender in Serie A history.

De Ligt, 19, arrived in Italy on Tuesday to undergo a medical before agreeing a five-year contract with the Bianconeri which could increase by another €10.5m in add-ons.

- When does the transfer window close?
- All major completed transfer deals
Transfer Grades: Juventus get A+ for De Ligt move

"It's the news all Bianconeri fans have been waiting to hear all summer: Matthijs de Ligt is officially a Juventus player!" the club said on its website.

Sky Italia reported that the contract includes a termination clause of €150m which is valid from the third year of the deal.

He had attracted interest from Paris Saint-Germain, Manchester United and Bayern Munich among others after helping Ajax reach the Champions League semifinal and Netherlands the UEFA Nations League final.

Spanish media reported that De Ligt had also been courted by Barcelona, but the player's agent Mino Raiola said at Juventus' headquarters on Wednesday that the Italian club were always the preferred destination.

"It's not a question of who wanted him most, but Juve are the best team for him. For a defender it is important to come to Italy," Raiola told reporters.

"If you are to become the greatest in the world, it is a necessary stage.

"He's the number one among the youngsters. He's like [Pavel] Nedved, maybe more than him, for his mentality and he's like Zlatan [Ibrahimovic] for his ambition. He has it all."

Although Ajax lost to Tottenham in the Champions League, De Ligt did win the Eredivisie title and Dutch Cup as part of a side that also featured Frenkie de Jong, who has since joined Barcelona.

De Ligt told Netherlands' NOS television in June that Juventus forward Cristiano Ronaldo asked him to join the Turin-based club at the end of the Nations League final after Portugal beat the Netherlands 1-0.

Capped 15 times by the Netherlands, he made 33 appearances last season and scored three goals.

De Ligt will link up with former Chelsea coach Maurizio Sarri at Juve and fellow new signings Adrien Rabiot, Gianluigi Buffon and Aaron Ramsey as the Bianconeri aim to win a ninth straight Scudetto.

Information from Reuters was used in this report.

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