Top English sides Stoke and Manchester City are hoping to persuade Nigeria Flying Eagles star Bernard Bulbwa to move to the Premier League, it has been reported bystokesentinel.co.uk.
Bulbwa is currently in Tunisia expected to wrap up a £1.6m move from Shuttle Sports Academy to Esperance.
He came to prominence earlier this month when his wonder goal in the final saw Nigeria win the AYC title.
Former Senegal international Salif Diao was scouting for Stoke at the tournament and it has now been suggested that the Potters have tried to hijack the move to Tunis.
Esperance are understood to be keen to tie up a deal for the attacking midfielder, aged 18, before he has a chance to add to his value at the under-20 World Cup.
Manchester City have previous links with Shuttle Sports Academy, signing central midfielder Chidiebere Nwakali in January last year.
Diao admitted it was difficult to bring the best young African talent to England, even he had spotted a superstar desperate to make the move.
The Potters ambassador was keen to support a tournament held in his home country of Senegal but was not surprised that scouts were few and far between.
“I was watching the tournament with friends,” he told the Senegalese press.
“If you spot a player for the UK market it is almost impossible to sign them up because the law only allows the recruitment of international players who are eligible for a work permit.
“That’s why the tournament doesn’t hold much interest for English clubs.”