Despite being cited as the main culprit for the Netherlands’ disappointing exit from Euro 2020, Matthijs de Ligt still has his admirers on the Italian peninsula.
The Dutchman received his marching orders after a deliberate handball against the Czech Republic, which culminated in the second round with the 2-0 defeat of his national team.
Even before this incident, Milan legend Marco Van Basten criticized the 21-year-old for his style of play and claimed that he still had a lot to learn at Juventus.
The former Ajax captain joined the Bianconeri in the summer of 2019 and is widely recognized as one of the best young defenders in the world.
Faced with harsh criticism, Juve’s legendary center-back Sergio Brio came out to defend de Ligt. The Italian served the club for 12 years between 1978 and 1990, playing alongside other great defenders – such as Gaetano Scirea, Claudio Gentile and Antonio Cabrini.
“De Ligt is the best Serie A defender and I honestly cannot share the opinion of the great Van Basten. It has grown a lot in Italy and is still developing, ”Brio said in an interview with Tuttosport above ilBianconero.
“There is no league more defining for defenders than ours. Another thing I love about De Ligt is its age. He’s not yet 22 and he’s very strong. it can become a real phenomenon because experience is the factor that improves a defender the most.
“De Ligt will develop more malice and focus, get stronger and stronger. I have always seen him as the really big newcomer to Juventus Turin in recent years. Even more important than Ronaldo, ”added the former Juventus captain.
“I’m sure what I’m saying, especially because I understand young defenders. I predicted a great career for Simon Kjaer when he was still in Palermo. “