Liverpool have made a move to try and sign teenage forward Jovan Malcolm from West Bromwich Albion and hope to complete a deal in the next few weeks.
Football Insider reported that the Anfield club are “doing preliminary checks” on the 16-year-old and aim to have him signed by the end of December, as he turns 17 next month and the Baggies cannot tie him down to a professional deal before his birthday.
However, Liverpool are facing competition in the race for the teenager’s signature, with Football Insider claiming that Manchester City have their sights set on him as well, while Birmingham Live reported that Manchester United and Arsenal are also interested in the prodigy.
Liverpool are already acutely aware of how lethal Malcolm can be in the penalty area, with the 16-year-old scoring four times for West Brom’s under-18 side in a 6-3 win over their Liverpool counterparts in a league fixture last weekend, as reported by wba.co.uk.
That exceptional performance took him to seven goals and three assists in nine matches in the Under-18 Premier League for the Baggies in the current campaign, as per Birmingham Live.
He is a quite versatile attacker, having played as both a left and right winger this season, as well as at centre-forward and on the right-hand side of midfield, with Football Insider claiming that Liverpool’s coaches have been blown away by the youngster’s talent.
The Reds have had their eye out for teenage prospects over the past few months, with 16-year-old Harvey Elliott and 17-year-old Sepp van den Berg signing for the club last summer from Fulham and PEC Zwolle respectively.
Liverpool have managed to plunder precocious attacking talents from other clubs in the past, signing Raheem Sterling from QPR’s Academy in 2010 before he went on to establish himself at Anfield and Manchester City, as well as in the England team.
Signing a 16-year-old off the back of one outstanding four-goal performance may seem like a knee-jerk reaction, but according to Football Insider, Malcolm had already been “regarded as one of the brightest prospects in his age group in the country”.
Also, as the likes of Elliott and Van den Berg have shown, the door to the first team is open to teenage prospects at Liverpool with Jurgen Klopp in charge.
He would almost certainly be signed with the long-term rather than the short-term in mind, but if Malcolm can build on his dazzling display against the Reds’ under-18s last weekend, he could be a real coup for Liverpool if they can beat off the competition to land him.
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