Ferguson makes check on midfield sensation

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Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson has reportedly made a personal check on highly-rated Crewe teenager Nick Powell, who has also been linked with Chelsea, Arsenal, Liverpool and Tottenham.

The 18-year-old has scored 15 times from midfield for the Alex this season, and Dario Gradi faces a difficult task in keeping Powell at Gresty Road this summer.

Such have the performances of Powell been this term, Stamford Bridge, the Emirates Stadium, Anfield or White Hart Lane are all reportedly realistic destinations for the youngster come the transfer window.

Old Trafford can now seemingly be added to that list, with Ferguson having paid a visit to watch Powell in the League Two encounter with Aldershot on Saturday, reports The Mirror.

It is claimed that the United boss wants to make an early move for Powell before an auction begins at the end of the season, although Spurs remain favourites to acquire his signature.

The interest of Chelsea, Arsenal and Liverpool cannot be discounted, however, with all three having shown a commitmment to invest in youth in more recent seasons.

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