Lionel Messi eager to see Barcelona beat Man Utd to signing of 18-year-old starlet

Barcelona and Man Utd have been tipped to engage in a transfer battle over the signing of one of Europe’s most promising young talents.

The Catalan giants have undoubtedly placed an emphasis on lowering the average age of the squad, with signings like Yerry Mina and Philippe Coutinho in January showing that they have a long-term plan in place.

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The same could be said of the arrivals of Ousmane Dembele and Nelson Semedo last summer, although both have struggled to adapt to life at the Nou Camp this season.

Nevertheless, it appears as though that strategy is going to continue, although Man Utd are preparing to offer stiff competition in the race to land Ajax starlet Justin Kluivert, as noted by Don Balon, and re-reported by The Express.

It’s claimed that Lionel Messi and Jose Mourinho are particularly keen on winning the battle for his signature for their respective clubs, as they’ve evidently seen something promising in Kluivert, the son of Dutch legend Patrick.

Having made his breakthrough for the senior Ajax side last season, along with a whole host of other top young talents who continue to suggest that there could be a promising future for the Dutch giants if they are able to keep hold of them, Kluivert has made further strides this year.

Capable and comfortable of playing on either flank, he’s contributed seven goals and four assists in 28 appearances so far this season, which seemingly has led to ongoing interest from around Europe.

Albeit Ajax remain 10 points off the pace behind rivals PSV Eindhoven in the Eredivisie title race, Kluivert is attracting plenty of attention with his form. Getting the green light from Messi and Mourinho as a top signing, as per the report above, isn’t bad for an 18-year-old just starting out in his career.

More Stories Jose Mourinho Justin Kluivert Lionel Messi