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Manchester United agree £750,000 fee to sign 17-year-old Man City goal machine McNeill

Manchester United have agreed a fee to sign hot prospect Charlie McNeill from rivals Man City for a deal which could rise to £1.35million ($1.7m), Goal understands.

The 17-year-old started his career at United before making the switch to City six years ago but decided not to agree professional terms with the Citizens after having limited opportunity in the club’s U18 side.

United have closely monitored the situation and since McNeill left in June they have been negotiating with City over a fee for the teenager.

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Due to the fact he only turned 17 in early September, the two clubs need to agree on a fee despite the centre forward no longer being in contract at the club or risk the transfer going to tribunal at a later date, which could end up costing even more.

It is understood a fee of £750,000 ($950,000) has been agreed between the two clubs which could rise to £1.35m with add-ons. The £1.35m is based on the number of first team performances McNeill will eventually make if and when he breaks into the senior United picture.

City would also be set to receive a percentage of any further sale for the striker who is said to have scored over 600 goals at youth level. United are understood to be working on finalising the transfer with all relevant parties before it can be confirmed.

Once the deal is concluded it will then go through the Premier League investigation process, which usually takes two to three weeks. 

McNeill will start the season with the club's U18s but could provide a boost to Neil Wood's U23s side, who have started the campaign without a recognised centre-forward in the squad. 

United have been investing heavily in the academy in the last couple of years, bringing in top talent from abroad and around the country in the aim to bolster their ranks. Midfielder Hannibal Mejbri was brought in from Monaco for €10m (£9m/$12m) last summer and there have been several new additions this year.

Full-back Marc Jurado has signed from Barcelona, left-back Alvaro Fernandez has arrived from Real Madrid and Atletico Madrid wonderkid Alejandro Garnacho has also made the switch. United have still yet to officially unveil the three players and they have all been required to isolate upon arrival in the UK due to the current government Covid-19 restrictions.

The club have also brought in Logan Pye and Joe Hugill who had both previously been with Sunderland, while Radek Vitek joined from Sigma Oloumouc.

The U18s get their league campaign underway on Saturday at home to Liverpool, while the older age group kicked off their season with a 6-0 win against Salford City in the EFL Trophy on Wednesday night.