Ajax CEO Edwin van der Sar has said he believes Matthijs de Ligt will leave the Dutch side in the summer, and he's likely to end up at a big club in the Premier League or La Liga.
He expressed hope the Ajax captain would go out on a high note, as the side are still battling for the Eredivisie title: "I think these will be De Ligt's final games with Ajax, but I hope he goes out on a high. He's been here since he was a child and will end up at a big club. I think he'll go to England or Spain."
Per the report, the defender has been linked with Barcelona, Manchester United, Manchester City, Liverpool and Juventus. The Catalan giants are seen as the favourites for his signature and have already secured team-mate Frenkie de Jong.
Ajax missed out on doing the treble with their shock exit at the hands of Spurs on Wednesday, but they can still do the Dutch double. They've already won the KNVB Cup by beating Willem II 4-0 on Sunday, claiming their first trophy since 2014.
De Ligt scored the opening goal on Wednesday as Ajax cruised to a 2-0 lead in the first half. Spurs produced a stunning comeback, though, with a Lucas Moura hat-trick handing them the win and a ticket to the final.
The aggregate score was 3-3, and Spurs held the away-goal tiebreaker (U.S. only):
It was a disappointing end to what has been a sensational European campaign for the 19-year-old. Statman Dave shared some of his key stats:
Along with big goals against Juventus and Spurs, his highlights also include epic battles with Karim Benzema and Cristiano Ronaldo in back-to-back ties. Both the Real Madrid and Juventus forwards scored in the first leg of their respective ties, but they were bullied by the teenager in the return fixtures.
A product of Ajax's vaunted academy, De Ligt made his international debut at the age of 17, forming a strong partnership with Liverpool's Virgil van Dijk. Despite his young age, he's bursting with confidence, per Samuel Luckhurst of the Manchester Evening News:
A big summer transfer seems likely, especially if Ajax do the Dutch double and win the Eredivisie. With two matches left to play, the Amsterdammers are tied with PSV Eindhoven for the lead.
Ajax's progress to the Champions League semi-finals was something of a Cinderella run, and with star midfielder De Jong departing for Barcelona, they're unlikely to replicate that success next season.