Edwin van der Sar has worked with some of modern football’s greats, but perhaps the greatest player he played with was Cristiano Ronaldo at Manchester United.
The Ajax Chief spoke about which player he feels is closest in terms of mentality to the great Ronaldo, and explained that it was Matthijs de Ligt, who currently plays with the Portuguese superstar at Juventus.
“He had been at Ajax all his life,” Van der Sar said to ESPN.
“So to step away, move with your girlfriend and the family to a different city in Italy, he must learn a new language and get to know his team-mates.
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“His mentality, that of someone who always tries to improve, makes him want to be the best defender in the world. And I’ve seen that with a few players, one of them is playing for his team, Cristiano Ronaldo.
“He has the same desire and hunger as De Ligt. Matthijs is only [20 years old]. He was fantastic for us at Ajax, our rock and our captain.”
De Ligt was one of the players considered by Manchester United in the summer transfer window, but he chose Juve instead, and is playing with some top players as we speak.