De Ligt: "A lot of people advised me to sign for FC Barcelona"

The Dutch centre back admitted it would have been great to play alongside Frenkie de Jong again but it was time to make a different decision

La Juve de De Ligt cae ante el Tottenham | sport

Dutch international and recent new signing at Juventus, Matthijs de Ligt, has given an interview to 'Voetbal International' where he talks about his decision not to join Barça, as well as the fact money didn't motivate him to choose the Serie A champions.

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Speaking after his new side lost to Tottenham Hotspur in their preseason opener, the defender said: "A lot of people advised me to do that (sign for Barça) but I told them I had to analyse everything and see which option was best for me."

"Frenkie (de Jong) and I spoke a lot about what we were going to do. We were honest with each other. It would have been great if we had continued playing together but our careers shouldn't be dependent on the decision of the other. We both have our own career paths. I looked at all the pros and cons and marked down some things. In the end, you have to feel right about the club which convinces you the most. That's why I came to Juventus," he explained.

Footballers don't tend to read a lot of the stories which are written in the newspapers but one story did upset De Ligt. "There was something new every day. There was one story which said that a club (Manchester United) didn't want me because my father was overweight. And you start to think, come on. I'm relaxed but at a certain point, these things bother you."

MONEY

De Ligt was also angry at a report which said he didn't sign for PSG because he was going to earn less than Mbappe. "How ridiculous. Money didn't play a part in my decision. Everyone who knows me, knows the truth. Mino (Raiola) is my agent and he took charge of the commerical side. But that only happens once I've made a sporting decision. Money was never the priority," he insisted.

The centre back didn't make a decision overnight. He took his time and went over all the proposals and that's why he asked Raiola not to make any comments about his future until after the Nations League.

One of his reasons for signing with Juventus was the tradition behind Italian football. "When you think about Italy, you think about defenders. Italy has produced some fantastic players but straight away you think of defenders like Fabio Cannavaro, Paolo Maldini, Franco Baresi or Alessandro Nesta. Defending is art here. I'm happy to continue my development at a club like this one. I even have a Juventus shirt from when I was seven years old."

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