Published time: 17 Jul, 2019 11:03
Cristiano Ronaldo's role in supposedly persuading Dutch wonderkid Matthijs de Ligt to spurn Barcelona's advances and instead join the Portuguese superstar at Juventus has been hailed by fans of the Bianconeri.
De Ligt, the 19-year-old center-back and captain of Champions League semi-finalists Ajax, is poised to complete a €75 million ($85 million) move to Turin in the coming hours where he will team up last year's big money arrival in the black and white, Ronaldo.Also on rt.com 'Deligted!': Dutch wonderkid De Ligt jets in to Turin to finalize 75mn Juve deal (VIDEO)
The Dutchman's impressive performances at the heart of the Ajax defense last season earmarked the teenager as one of the best defensive prospects in a generation, something that Ronaldo himself noted when he faced De Ligt on three occasions - one of which was when De Ligt scored the winner after Ronaldo had opened the scoring in the Champions League quarterfinal second leg at the Juventus Stadium.
Indeed, at the UEFA Nations League Final last month Ronaldo was seen approaching De Ligt after the final whistle with the Dutch player revealing to the media after the game that the five-time Ballon d'Or winner had sounded him out about a potential transfer to Turin.
"That could be true, yes," De Ligt told a reporter who asked if Ronaldo had petitioned for him to transfer to Juventus.
"I didn’t understand him at first. I was a little shocked, so I laughed, but I didn’t say anything. Shortly after the game you are not at all concerned with it, you are disappointed you have lost and that is the only thing you are thinking about."
Ronaldo's persuasion (along with a hefty pay packet) was enough for De Ligt to opt for the Portuguese ahead of Lionel Messi (as well as ex-Ajax teammate Frenkie de Jong who will line up for Barca next season) and this has led to to Twitter denizens hailing their star striker for his persuasive skills.
A throwback when Cristiano Ronaldo asked Matthijs De Ligt to join Juventus. Superb 'agent'. = pic.twitter.com/gtN8QDdV0N— Piemonte Calcio <�<� href="https://twitter.com/JuveTimeline/status/1149800353069617152?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">July 12, 2019
June 9 - Cristiano asked De ligt about a potential Juventus move after <�<��<�<�.
July 16 - Matthijs de Ligt has officially joined Juventus
Agent Ronaldo => pic.twitter.com/GMA4LZLyX4
— ONOME (@MeetOnome) July 16, 2019
When Cristiano Ronaldo asks you to join Juventus you join Juventus.Rejected top clubs like Barcelona, PSG & United. De Ligt chooses Cristiano Ronaldo over Lionel Messi.
The influence Cristiano Ronaldo has is absolutely incredible.pic.twitter.com/CMvYIonbnf— Mu. (@FutbolMuu) July 16, 2019
Cristiano Ronaldo managed to persuade a bloke whos destined to be the worlds best central defender for a decade, to join Juventus instead of Barcelona, after a conversation which lasted less than 10 seconds, despite all that Johan Cruyff DNA supposedly flowing through De Ligt— Muddassir Hussain (@muddassirjourno) July 16, 2019
De Ligt is finally expected to put pen to paper on Wednesday in a deal worth a reported €12 million a year for the teenager.
He could make his bow for the club when they face Tottenham in a pre-season friendly in Singapore on Sunday.