Manchester United are reported to be among a group of clubs eyeing Stoke City youngster Emre Tezgel.
According to The Mail, United, City, and Chelsea are all paying attention to Tezgel, 16, after his impressive start to the season at academy level.
Tezgel is a striker and is an England youth international who was born in Burton and also holds Turkish citizenship.
Manchester United interest makes sense
Tezgel is making a name for himself at youth level and Manchester United witnessed this first hand last month.
United’s under-18s side beat Stoke City 4-2 a fortnight ago and Tezgel scored both goals for the Staffordshire side.
He has scored seven goals in four games for Stoke’s under-18s side this season, including a hat-trick against Liverpool.
Tezgel has four goals in three games for England’s under-17s side, netting twice in games against Portugal and the Netherlands.
Brexit rules means United can only sign players under 18 who are from the UK. Tezgel fits the bill and he is understandably a hot property.
What they say about Tezgel
Stoke academy director Gareth Owen was quoted by The Mail making a lofty comparison.
He said: “He’s a Harry Kane-type centre-forward. That gets bandied about but his movement is good, he can hold the ball up and he is decent in the air. His main attribute, though, is his finishing and that’s what good centre-forwards have.
“He plays like a seasoned pro, pulling off at an angle, giving little nudges to the centre-back and making space. It’s great to have that bank of knowledge already at his age.”
Tezgel made his debut for Stoke’s under-18s last season and says he is a better player for doing so. He has 14 goals in 27 games plus five assists at this level altogether.
Quoted by The Sun, he said: “I’ve played in higher age groups all my life but I can say it is especially difficult stepping up to the under-18s. It took me a while to get used to the physical challenge. When your speed alone is not enough as a striker, you have to use your mind in the final third.
“Next season I want us to finish top of the league and I want to score more goals and push myself for the next age group. I want to play football at the highest level in league and international tournaments.”
One to watch
Stoke City will no doubt have the fee Birmingham City landed for Jude Bellingham in their minds as clubs circle for Tezgel.
United won’t want to pay silly money and have other strong strikers in the academy already.
Our own Manni Norkett scored two goals himself in the 4-2 win over Tezgel’s Stoke and has five goals in five games this season.
If United feel Tezgel is worth adding and a deal can be done at a reasonable price, he is a bright talent who could be a smart gamble.
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