Manchester City fend off late Tottenham hijack attempt to seal £700,000 transfer

Manchester City have seen off a late attempt by Tottenham boss Mauricio Pochettino to secure a deal for Ipswich Town wonderkid Ben Knight, the Telegraph reports.

City will pay £700,000 up front for the 16-year-old, regarded as one of England’s most talented prospects of his generation, with add-ons potentially taking the deal up to £1million.

Tottenham made an effort to convince him to snub a move to the Etihad Stadium, but City’s combination of state-of-the-art training facilities, a full private education programme, and very good professional terms convinced Knight and his family to choose Manchester over North London.

Manchester United, Borussia Dortmund and Monaco have also tracked the teenager, who is described as technically ‘exceptional’ and has been compared to Lionel Messi in terms of his ability and stature.

The transfer is expected to be finalised early next week, with City’s ban on signing domestic youngsters ending on June 30. The second year of the ban is suspended for three years, allowing them to recruit from domestic clubs once more.

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