Manchester United have been tipped to beat Juventus, Paris Saint-Germain and Valencia to the January of signing of French teenager Noam Emeran, a 16-year-old forward who is currently playing for Amiens at youth level.
The youngster was born in September 2002 and has represented France's Under-16s.
Malgré des dernières tentatives du #PSG, Juventus et surtout Valence, Noam Emeran (Amiens) devrait bien signer à Manchester United cet hiver. On parle d'un transfert estimé à 2 millions d'euros, avec des bonus pouvant faire grimper le total à 10 millions d'euros + % à la revente— Loïc Tanzi (@Tanziloic) December 7, 2018
The information has been shared on Twitter by French journalist Loïc Tanzi, who has suggested that United have been able to stay at the front of the race despite late interest from the likes of Juve and PSG. Valencia are believed to have made the strongest challenge.
It is said that an initial deal is expected to go through at €2m (£1.8m) but that fee could rise to as much as €10m (£8.9m) in time, with Amiens also entitled to a percentage of any sell-on fee.
United's academy has undergone a major revamp in recent years, with former Old Trafford star and 'Class of '92' graduate Nicky Butt in charge of proceedings since 2016.
Butt has placed a major emphasis on scouting so that United can identify the best young players in England and across Europe. "Recruitment of players is a massive juggernaut on its own," he told the Manchester Evening News not long after taking over two years ago.
"You just need to get yourself in the right position if the new [Cristiano] Ronaldo, or the new Marcus Rashford comes along. He could be in Longsight (south Manchester) or Buenos Aires or anywhere in the world. You just have to be there ready."
Executive vice-chairman Ed Woodward confirmed United's commitment to its academy and youth setup during the announcement of the club's most recent financial results.
"Our financial strength enables us to continue to attract and retain top players and to invest in our academy, as we look to drive the success on the pitch that the club and our fans expect," he said.
United currently have a remarkable record that has seen at least one home grown player named in every single matchday squad since October 1937, a run stretching back 81 years. Marcus Rashford, Jesse Lingard, Scott McTominay and Paul Pogba are the current first team players who have risen through the academy ranks at Old Trafford, with further talents on the fringes.