Having already defeated Manchester United in the Champions League final, Barcelona look set to come out on top again, this time in the race for highly-rated Leeds United winger Elliott Kebbie.
The 16-year-old has been watched by Manchester United scouts quite a lot over the last couple of seasons and Sir Alex Ferguson was expected to make a move for him this summer.
The Red Devils boss is keen to bring in plenty of young players to Old Trafford to ensure that the club is in good hands years after he leaves.
Barcelona could be set to trump part of this plan though with their interest in Kebbie. In fact, the youngster has already played for the Juvenil B team and spent time at the club’s La Masia training ground.
The winger – who has a sprinting background – has phenomenal pace and is expected to have a successful future in the game, hence the interest from arguably the best two teams in Europe.
Barcelona appears to be his likely destination though with an official statement from Leeds United saying: “The club has retained its right to compensation should he choose to pursue a football career in Spain and sign for another club.”
This is a bitter blow for United who would have considered themselves the front runners to land the best English talent. Barcelona’s move for Kebbe could set a precedent for future deals involving England’s best young players.
Ferguson and United will move onto the next one though and look to follow up their signing of Blackburn defender Phil Jones with a few more recruits.
As for Barcelona, they could once again be in the market for Cesc Fabregas and are expected to make one last bid for the Arsenal captain’s services later this week.