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De Ligt wins Kopa award


Juventus defender Matthijs de Ligt has won the Kopa Trophy for best under-21 player of last season.

De Ligt reached the Champions League semi-finals with Ajax last season, eliminating future club Juve along the way, and won a domestic double.

Those exploits earned him a move to Turin over the summer for a reported €75m.

The Kopa Trophy was introduced last year, with Kylian Mbappe winning the inaugural award, beating the likes of Gianluigi Donnarumma and Patrick Cutrone.

“I am really proud and happy,” said the 20-year-old upon accepting the award at the Ballon dOr ceremony in Paris on Monday night.

“I hope you all enjoy the evening at this wonderful venue. I’d like to thank Ajax, who taught me a lot, and Juventus, my new club, as well as my teammates.”

Other winners included Liverpool’s Alisson, who claimed the Yachine Trophy for best goalkeeper, and US star Megan Rapinoe, who collected the Ballon d’Or Feminin for best women’s player.

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