Matthijs de Ligt has become the third most expensive teenager of all time


Matthijs De Ligt is officially a Juventus player after completing his €75m switch from Ajax. 

The Dutchman was unveiled on Thursday, signing up to Maurizio Sarri's vision despite interest from Barcelona, Real Madrid, Manchester United, and Paris Saint-Germain.

Now that one of the summer's most protracted transfer sagas is over, it already looks like astute business from the Bianconeri. 

The 19-year-old has a release clause of €150m, only becoming active in 2021, so the Italian champions will make a huge profit on him if he does move on in the future. 

In the meantime, they have on their hands one of the world's most highly-rated centre-backs. 

In an Ajax side that glittered with potential last season as they reached the Champions League semi-finals, De Ligt was arguably the standout talent. 

When it's put in context, €75m for a defender of his calibre is relatively small change in a summer when Harry Maguire is expected to sign for Manchester United for £80million. 

Nonetheless, De Ligt still has enormous expectations to live up to as he becomes the third most expensive teenager of all time. 

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Per the Daily Mail's list, only Kylian Mbappe (£165.7m) and Joao Felix (£113m) completed more expensive transfers before turning 20. 

The Frenchman has been worth every penny for PSG, while Felix has only just made his move to Atletico Madrid. 

The De Ligt signing eclipses a number of other high-profile deals.

Behind him are Anthony Martial to Manchester United (£58m), Rodrygo Goes to Real Madrid (£40m), Vinicius Junior, also to Real (£38.7m), and Lucas Moura to PSG (£35.5m). 

In fact, United have been responsible for creating several of the most expensive starlets, Luke Shaw joining for £31m in 2014 and all the way back in 2004, shelling out £27m for Wayne Rooney. 

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Red Devils fans might well be scratching their heads as to why the club weren't willing to blow Juventus out of the water on this occasion. 

Last in the top 10 comes the cautionary tale of Renato Sanches, who Bayern Munich procured from Benfica for £27.5.

On that occasion, United were right to drop their interest, the Portuguese having struggled in Bavaria, subsequently flopping at Swansea, before gradually having to put his career back together in the Bundesliga.

There are no such fears about De Ligt, who has already proven himself with the Netherlands and in the Eredivisie. 

Juventus' defence was already notoriously impenetrable. Only four teams in Europe's top five European leagues - Manchester City, Liverpool, Atletico Madrid, and RB Leipzig - conceded fewer league goals in 2018/19. 

That back line has just got even better - and all for just €75m. 

Where does De Ligt rank among the world's best defenders? Have your say in the comments.

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