United and Barca go head-to-head for sensational samba star

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Sao Paulo’s teen sensation Lucas is being tracked by La Liga champions Barcelona and Manchester United.

Sir Alex Ferguson sent scouts to the recent South American U20 Championships in Peru, where Lucas was playing for the Brazilian national set-up.

The 18-year-old wonder kid scored a hat-trick and provided an assist during Brazil’s 6-0 rout over Uruguay which secured the title after 5 rounds where they were the only team in the Final Group to win 4 of the 5 games.

The Sao Paulo trickster proved to be an impressive figure operating in the centre of the attacking midfield, and netted a total of four goals to help Brazil earn a place in the 2011 FIFA World Cup U-20.


Lucas is regarded as one of the rising stars of Brazilian football and, despite his young age, has already become a permanent fixture in Sao Paulo's starting lineup, also catching the eye of Barcelona’s head of inspection Albert Valentin.

Having recently committed his future to his boyhood club until 2015, in an attempt to ward off interest from the circling European heavyweights, Sao Paulo officials have slapped an astronomical £80m minimum fee release clause on Lucas, making a move to Old Trafford more complicated.

Speaking of the new deal, Lucas’ agent Wagner Ribeiro confirmed, "This is satisfactory for both parties and the deal has also increased his wage substantially."

Manchester United officials are still confident of reaching an agreement with Sao Paulo, and hope that Lucas can still become a Red Devil at the end of the season.

If negotiations are successful, it is likely that Lucas will be placed straight into the Carrington based academy to allow Alex Ferguson and his coaching staff to nurture his exciting potential which could result in the player becoming a leading Manchester United star of the future.

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