Arsenal are reportedly in line to win the race to sign Exeter City youngster Ethan Ampadu, leaving rivals Liverpool, Chelsea and Manchester United disappointed after missing out.
The 16-year-old has been attracting interest from several top clubs having made 10 appearances for Exeter in all competitions so far this season, while also representing Wales at Under-19 level.
As noted by the Liverpool Echo, Ampadu spent time on trial on Merseyside when he was just 14, and although there was interest from the Reds in signing him, he opted to stay with Exeter instead.
That seems to have been a sensible decision as he has continued his development and broken into the first-team where opportunities are more forthcoming, but Liverpool reportedly maintained an interest in him and monitored his progress but are now set to miss out on the classy teenager.
It’s added in the report that both Chelsea and Manchester United were also keen on Ampadu, but it looks as though Arsenal have been able to jump to the front of the queue.
The Gunners have had an advantage in the race as his father, Kwame, currently works as a coach for them in their academy, and so he would have undoubtedly had a quiet word with his son hoping that he would join him in north London.
Ampadu is described as an “athletic, ball-playing midfielder” in the report who is also versatile enough to play at centre-back, while he was also named Wales’ young player of the year last month.
In turn, that gives an indication of how talented he is, although Jurgen Klopp is seemingly set to be left disappointed as Arsene Wenger looks likely to add another top young talent to his Arsenal squad and will hope to see him develop into a first-team player for the Gunners further down the line.