MANCHESTER UNITED face losing out to RB Leipzig in the battle for Benfica sensation Umaro Embalo.
The Portugal Under-17s striker has also been monitored by Real Madrid and Barcelona but reports in Germany say Bundesliga big-spenders Leipzig are the new frontrunners.
Leipzig officials went to Lisbon last Tuesday for talks with Benfica president Luis Felipe Vieira over signing Embalo, according to Bild.
The 16-year-old has yet to play a senior game for the Portuguese giants but played against United in the UEFA Youth League this season.
Old Trafford chief scout Javier Ribalta and head of development John Murtagh both watched the starlet last month.
Benfica seem sure to hold out for at least the £16million valuation Embalo was reportedly given just weeks ago.
He still has nearly a year and a half left on his current contract.
Embalo has been earmarked for superstardom since arriving from his native Guinea-Bissau aged 14.
He turned up at Benfica as part of a holiday camp arranged for youngsters from his home country.
Amateur Lisbon side AD Oeiras, for whom Portugal and Genoa midfielder Miguel Veloso played, quickly snapped him up..
Then Benfica themselves signed him within a year and he is already one of their main men at Under-19 level.
Embalo's idol is Paris Saint-Germain's former Benfica and Real winger Angel Di Maria, whose pace and trickery he often emulates through the middle.
Embalo's agent Catio Balde dismissed talk last month that United were close to recruiting him.
Balde said then: "He has interest from several clubs, because he is an asset of Benfica and has gone down this route well.
"I can say that all the great clubs in Europe have already asked for information about Umaro, from Germany, England, Spain, France.
“If he’s going to Manchester is something that I don’t know at all.
"But it’s true that we have already met with Benfica and Manchester, there is no agreement, but there are conversations.”
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