Manchester United, Liverpool and Arsenal have been mentioned as among the main clubs who tried to sign exciting West Ham United teenager Reece Oxford last season, according to the Manchester Evening News.
The 16-year-old has caused quite a commotion since his hugely impressive debut for the Hammers last weekend, when he starred for the club in a shock 2-0 win at the Emirates Stadium.
Oxford now looks to become a key part of West Ham’s first team this season after this tremendous breakthrough, although it appears as though some big sides were already alerted to his talent before he truly emerged on the scene in gameweek one.
The promising defensive player signed his first professional contract with West Ham in January, but it seems he could have been heading to one of United, Liverpool or Arsenal after attracting big interest previously, the Manchester Evening News claims.
These three clubs are well known for developing some of the country’s best young players, but it seems Oxford has made the sensible decision to stay where he is to continue his development, with first-team opportunities surely far less likely at Old Trafford, Anfield or the Emirates Stadium at the moment.
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It must be said that West Ham also have a fine tradition of bringing through homegrown talent from their youth academy, with players like Rio Ferdinand, Michael Carrick and Joe Cole among their recent success stories in the Premier League.
However, even if he does stay with the Hammers, there are no guarantees that Oxford will be a regular starter, with the likes of Mark Noble, Cheikhou Kouyate, Kevin Nolan, Pedro Obiang and Diego Poyet all competing for places in the heart of the midfield.