sport news Matthijs De Ligtt's Italian dream goes cold following his £68m move from Ajax

Matthijs De Ligt's Italian dream goes cold: He was a hero at Ajax but now the £70m defender has been benched by Maurizio Sarri as Juventus stars Cristiano Ronaldo and Gianluigi Buffon try to cheer him up at training... but Barcelona could be an escape route Matthijs De Ligt has struggled to earn consistent game time at Juventus He appears to have lost favour with Maurizio Sarri, who prefers Merih Demiral Star Juve players like Cristiano Ronaldo and Gianluigi Buffon try to cheer him up But Barcelona could come calling again and De Ligt may well be interested  

By Alvise Cagnazzo For Mailonline

Published: 10:35 GMT, 8 January 2020 | Updated: 10:44 GMT, 8 January 2020

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Matthijs De Ligt has had a hard time at Juventus since his summer transfer from Ajax but now, he is enduring his first real crisis since he arrived in

The huge £68m transfer fee Juve paid to Ajax to land one of Europe's most coveted players last year was not enough to guarantee him the certainty of playing time. 

For Maurizio Sarri, the defender is simply not the first choice in the heart of his defence and the Dutchman appears to be feeling the effects of being left out in the cold. 

Matthijs De Ligt has become a familiar faces on the bench at Juventus this season

Matthijs De Ligt has become a familiar faces on the bench at Juventus this season 

The Dutchman joined Juve for a huge fee but it offered no guarantees over playing time

The Dutchman joined Juve for a huge fee but it offered no guarantees over playing time 

The £68m move from Ajax was heralded as a major coup for Juve but things are yet to work out

The £68m move from Ajax was heralded as a major coup for Juve but things are yet to work out

The Dutchman has gone silent - even his Instagram account has gone quiet and there was no comment whatsoever after his team's extraordinary 4-0 victory over Cagliari on Monday.  

He has spent the last 5 matches on the bench: Sarri has chosen Merih Demiral ahead of the young Dutch defender, who sits on the bench next to Sarri. The duel with the Turkish centre-back sparked concern with De Ligt and the silence on social networks seems to be a sign of a small annoyance for not having played a game in the last 30 days. 

After the terrible defeat against Lazio in , the defender no longer played alongside Bonucci. 

'Playing 23 games after Chiellini's injury, learning a new foreign language and adapting to the fast pace of Serie A is not easy for De Ligt,' Sarri said. 'He is now resting and recovering from an injury.'

But ultimately for De Ligt, the journey from captain and

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