Since joining Ajax in 2020, Antony Matheus dos Santos, better known only as Antony, has gone on to become one of Europe’s best young players in the ongoing football season. The winger joined the Eredivisie from Sao Paulo and has made the right-wing position his own under Erik ten Hag.
Just like any other Brazilian footballer, Antony started his career in Brazil with Sao Paulo. Antony joined the youth setup of Sao Paulo FC in 2010. In 2018, his side won the J League Challenge tournament in Japan, and he was voted the best player in the tournament.
On 26 September 2018, Antony, along with Helinho and Igor Gomes, was promoted to the senior team, and he signed a contract until September 2023. On 15 November, he made his first-team debut, coming on as a substitute for Helinho in a 1–1 draw against Gremio.
On 23 February 2020, Ajax signed Antony on a five-year deal for an initial 13 million euros, which could rise to 18.2 million euros. On 13 September 2020, he scored his first goal for Ajax in a 1–0 win over Sparta Rotterdam. He bagged his second goal for Ajax in a league game against SBV Vitesse. On 3 November 2020, Antony scored his first UEFA Champions League goal in a 2–1 away win over Midtjylland in the 2020–21 season.
Antony is perhaps one of the most surprisingly mature players coming through in Europe.
Antony is already one of the favourite players of Tite in Brazil’s National Squad. If the team had a player like him in the wings, then the result would have been different for the Selecao. Antony now has seven caps and two goals for his country, which has comfortably qualified for the World Cup later this year.
Many top clubs have already targeted the Brazilian attacker. Earlier, there were reports that Real Madrid president Florentino Perez was prepared to sanction a big-money move for the Brazil international in 2022.
The report claims that Antony is wanted in addition to Kylian Mbappe, who could join Los Blancos on a free transfer next summer if he does not pen a new deal with Paris Saint-Germain.
PSG has also kept him on their radar. If Mbappe leaves, they will surely enter the race to sign him. With fellow Brazilian players like Neymar and Marquinhos, PSG could entice the 21-year-old to accept a proposal.
Chelsea has been previously linked with the youngster. However, it seems the Blues won’t be able to get their hands on the Brazilian in the winter transfer window. Ajax manager Erik ten Hag recently said that it is improbable the dutch team would sell their key forward in January.
Barcelona was also one of the teams that have been linked with the winger. Barcelona is reportedly chasing Ajax winger Antony, who has drawn comparisons with club legend Ronaldinho.