?Having bid farewell to two of their greatest ever players, let alone midfielders, in the shape of Xavi and Andrés Iniesta in recent seasons, the task of finding a suitable replacement was always going to be a daunting one for Barcelona.
That said, they may very well have done so already.
Bursting onto the scene at Ajax, Frenkie de Jong has since established himself as one of Europe’s most talented youngsters, which makes it no surprise that
?From European adventures to bossing
Bernabéu Blitz (5/3/2019)
He had Zinedine Zidane’s side chasing shadows with an immaculate outing that oozed composure and class, as Ajax emerged 4-1 victors to reach the quarter-finals with a 5-3 aggregate success. It was a momentous occasion in European football that truly demonstrated his, and his side’s, pure class.
Going One Better in Turin (16/4/2019)
Such a youthful outfit not boasting the household names of their more familiar European opponents, the Ajax steam train defied the odds and maintained its dominance into to next round when they faced Juventus over two legs.
A nervy home leg finished honours even at 1-1, leaving their trip to Turin with the tie firmly in the balance.
Cristiano Ronaldo’s opener had put the hosts in the driving seat. However, as t
KNVB Cup Winners (5/6/2019)
It was mostly smooth sailing to the final of the competition, brushing aside their opponents with relative ease, barring a penalty shootout win over Roda JC Kerkrade in the round of 16.
Not to let their good work go to waste, Ajax put Willem II to the sword in another commanding
While the league wasn’t fully sewn up, and their Champions League semi-final just three days later, there was every possibility this would be De Jong’s final trophy success with his club before jetting off to Catalonia. Therefore, he made no mistake in bossing proceedings and leading his side to a fully deserved 4-0 victory.
Just ten days after their cup success, and seven days following their European exit, an away point over De Graafschap was all that stood in De Jong’s way from a domestic double and a perfect send off from the club he made his name with.
PSV Eindhoven had been breathing down Ajax’s necks throughout the pulsating title challenge, and were just three points off their nearest rivals heading into the final round of fixtures.
A solitary point would do the trick, but De Jong and co made no mistake with a 4-1 win that presented the club with their first domestic double in 17 years. Once again De Jong was pivotal to their success, controlling the midfield and feeding his teammates with inch-perfect precision.
The league title was headed back to Amsterdam for the first time since 2014, and De Jong was duly awarded
First Barcelona Goal (14/9/2019)
His ?La Liga debut turned out to be a day to forget for the Dutchman, seeing his side fall to a late defeat against Athletic Bilbao, so we’ll brush over that for the moment.
Instead, we’ll shift focus to his debut goal for the club, which came in a 5-2 home demolition of Valencia. Firstly, he set up the historic first of the match, feeding Ansu Fati to net on his first competitive start for the club at the age of just 16.
Returning the favour, Fati then provided the cutback for De Jong to slam home just five minutes later in what is just the beginning of what will undoubtedly be a memorable and prolific Blaugrana career.
The game itself was won at a canter, and with the sublime ability of the club’s new Dutch superstar, it is sure to be one of many to come.