Liverpool are 'hopeful' of beating Manchester United in the race for lower-league sensation Jordon Ibe.
The 16-year-old Wycombe Wanderers forward has been earning rave reviews in Npower League One, rising to prominence with a goal against Sheffield Wednesday during his first senior start for the club.
Some of the top clubs in the Barclays Premier League are reported to have taken an interest, with the Reds and Red Devils amongst those who have sent scouts to watch the teenage talent.
The Daily Express reports today that Liverpool are now 'hopeful' of winning the race for the player.
Liverpool are renowned for bringing top young talent to Anfield, with Raheem Sterling moving to Merseyside last year and Seyi Ojo making the move last month as the club look to boost their academy ranks.
At senior level, Kenny Dalglish has also shown a desire to bring young English talent to the club, with Andy Carroll signed in January and Jordan Henderson making the Liverpool move in the summer.
With the club's U18's failing to progress past the early stages of the FA Youth Cup this term, Ibe could swell the ranks further with English talent, but is unlikely to be challenging for a senior Liverpool chance just yet should a move materialise.
For Manchester United, manager Sir Alex Ferguson has a reputation for bringing the best young players to Old Trafford in an effort to swell the ranks for years to come.
This summer, the club spent big on Phil Jones and David de Gea, whilst Manchester United academy graduates Danny Welbeck and Tom Cleverley are regulars in the senior side.
Youth players have also had their chance in the Carling Cup this term, with bright futures expected for Raheem Sterling, Paul Pogba and Ezekiel Fryers at Manchester United.
Ferguson is unlikely to let Ibe join one of the club's great rivals without a fight, and both clubs can expect a transfer battle in January as the pair look to build for the future.