Overmars says Barcelona leads race to land De Jong and De Ligt
Ajax sporting director Marc Overmars spoke about the futures of young stars Frenkie De Jong and Matthijs De Ligt following the Champions League draw.
The battle to sign Ajax players Frenkie De Jong and Matthijs De Ligt is set to be one of the biggest soap operas in next summer’s transfer market. Several of Europe’s top clubs are in the race to land the two young Dutch stars, but currently one club is in pole position: Barcelona – something not even Ajax’s sporting director Marc Overmars can deny.
Following the draw for the last 16 of the Champions League, in which Ajax were pitted against Real Madrid, Overmars acknowledged Barcelona’s interest and positioned them ahead of other interested clubs.
“Barcelona is my favourite, it’s a fantastic club, but there are two other clubs that are very close,” said Overmars, who also had a warning for Barcelona’s sporting direction. "All of Europe is moving and Barça must do things well,” he added.
Overmars, who played for Barcelona for four seasons between 2000 and 2004, acknowledged that the club’s stature and players like Messi would be important factors in De Ligt and De Jong’s decision, for whom, he stated, money was not a motivation.
"Messi can help, money is not important for them, last year they could have gone with good offers and they decided to stay. They didn’t need me to speak well of Barça because they already know it,” he said.