Premier League heavyweights Liverpool, Manchester United and Manchester City have reportedly joined the chase for England-born Nigerian youngster Carney Chukwuemeka who plays for Aston Villa’s U-18 side, Completesports.com reports.
Villa CEO Christian Purslow recently described Chukwuemeka as “probably the best 16-year-old in England right now”.
Villa have held contract talks with Chukwuemeka, and are hoping to persuade him there will be a clearer path to the first team if he remains at Villa Park.
But according to The Sun, the Premier League strugglers have a fight on their hands as Liverpool and United are monitoring the Northampton-born box-to-box midfielder.
Also The Athletic reports that City are also interested in the homegrown talent who is a member of the England U-17 team.
United boss Ole Gunnar Solskjaer is out to sign young, talented homegrown players who can grow with the club, while Liverpool have invested in teenagers such as winger Harvey Elliott and right-back Ki-Jana Hoever recently.
Chukwuemeka is still training part-time while he completes his studies.
In terms of football development he is behind fellow 16-year-old Jude Bellingham, who is a Championship regular for Birmingham City and is another player being targeted by Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s United.
However, Bellingham is reportedly just a signature away from completing a transfer to Borussia Dortmund, according to recent reports from Germany.
The 16-year-old has been heavily courted by both clubs desperate to land his services, with United having even shown the youngster round the club’s training facilities.
Bild report that Bellingham is ready to snub United and put pen to paper on a switch to the Bundesliga giants.
The German publication adds that Bellingham might well have already completed the agreement had it not been for the coronavirus outbreak.
By James Agberebi
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