Ajax paid Willem II just €1 to sign Frenkie de Jong in 2015

Frenkie de Jong has become a star for Ajax.

Frenkie de Jong has exploded onto the scene this season as a key part of a brilliant Ajax team.

The legendary Dutch side have knocked out Real Madrid and Juventus on their way to the Champions League semi-finals.

They'll now meet Tottenham Hotspur over two legs, hoping to secure their first Champions League final since 1996.

De Jong has stolen the show on multiple occasions, already earning him a €75m move to Barcelona at the end of the season.

It's quite an achievement for a player who is still just 21 years old - Barca clearly want him to be an integral part of the team for the foreseeable future.

De Jong always had this future ahead of him, however.

His move to Ajax in 2015 is clear evidence of that.

De Jong begun his career at Willem II, making his debut in May 2015. Ajax were impressed enough by his talent that they secured his signing before the start of the next season - for just €1.

Importantly, however, Willem II secured a 10% sell-on clause in the deal, banking on De Jong developing better at Ajax and being sold for a large amount down the line.

De Jong has been a star as Ajax made the Champions League semi-finals.

It's something Ajax have become known for, after all. Unable to compete with the 'rich' clubs, they are forced to sell on their best players.

They'll face four ex-players against Spurs, for instance.

And Willem II have been proven right to do the deal this way. Rather than securing a few hundred thousand for a young player, they'll instead get €7.5m.

That's undeniably brilliant business. Despite technically selling De Jong for one euro, he's gone on to become their record sale, eclipsing Mounir El Hamdaoui to AZ Alkmaar in 2008.

Ajax have now beaten Real Madrid and Juventus.

Ajax, too, did well. They effectively made a risk-free transfer on De Jong, only needing to pay substantial money if he became an elite player.

De Jong won't be the last player in this Ajax side to leave for a large amount, though. Mattias de Ligt is in high-demand and may even join his teammate in Catalonia.

It's a shame to see this team broken up at such a young age but they're now just three games from leaving a historic legacy at the club.

Maybe then they can think about keeping these fantastic talents around for longer.

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