Arsenal and Liverpool have been given a deadline for which they can swoop for one of the most highly-rated youngsters in European football, as his contract talks rumble on without a conclusion.
Dutch publication Voetbal International claims that the 18-year-old is not convinced he has much of a future at PSV Eindhoven and they have been wrangling over a new contract since last year. Both Arsenal and Liverpool have been credited with an interest in the exciting young midfielder, who burst onto the scene last season by scoring an amazing hat-trick in only his second Eredivisie appearance for the club.
The report claims that PSV had been refusing to play Bakkali until they came to some resolution over his future and run with quotes from the club's technical director, Marcel Brands, revealing that the player will make a decision over his future before the first day of training on June 26. It also claims that he will be made3 available for transfer immediately if they cannot come to an agreement over a new deal.
Arsenal and Liverpool should be rubbing their hands at the prospect of Bakkali rejecting PSV's new offer as it would be a massive coup if they could land one of the most naturally gifted young players around at the moment. While Liverpool's recent reputation does not quite match up with that of Arsenal's for bringing through young talent, Brendan Rodgers is setting a system in place that should improve than.
Anfield fans were treated to some electrifying football last season as Liverpool fell just short of an unlikely Premier League title. Rodgers had a lot to do with that, as the Reds boss infused lots of youth and a gung-ho style since taking up the post, with a number of youth team players being given a chance. It is this faith in talented youth that has seen Arsene Wenger unearth a number of fantastic players in his time at Arsenal and more than a few current world superstars owe their fame and standing to 'Le Professeur'.
Both the Gunners and the Reds should be doing all they can to land Bakkali for next season, as they could find themselves with the next Adnan Januzaj on their hands, whose breaking into the Manchester United team last season was so impressive it earned him a call-up for Belgium at the 2014 World Cup in Brazil.