After finding life on the Juventus bench not all it is cracked up to be, defender Matthijs de Ligt could be a potential summer transfer target for Manchester United, if and when the Summer window opens.
After leading Ajax to the Champions League semi-finals last year, De Ligt was one of the most sought after players in Europe. Choosing to join Juventus on a five-year contract for a £67.5million fee, the Dutch star has found life in Italy tough, starting 17 of the club’s 26 games in Serie A, and could be open to a shock move away.
De Ligt started the season in the Juve starting lineup but by January was on the bench after being replaced by Merih Demiral. Although United have several options in defense, ESPN suggests United are monitoring the situation closely.
United had previously scouted De Ligt when he was an Ajax player, but if he moved to Old Trafford there would be strong competition for playing time, with new skipper Harry Maguire and Victor Lindelöf cemented in the United backline, plus Eric Bailly and Axel Tuanzebe knocking on the door for a starting spot.
Even with Phil Jones being linked with a move away this summer, add to the equation the possible return of on-loan Chris Smalling from Roma and the backline situation becomes very crowded.
De Ligt is managed by super-agent Mino Raiola, who also manages Paul Pogba and Jesse Lingard. Needless to say, United don’t have the best relationship with Raiola, so that casts more doubt on the potential move.
United manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer does like De Ligt’s playing style, character, and versatility, however, so it wouldn't be a total surprise if this move did happen in the summer.