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George Ilenikhena: The Man Utd-linked wonderkid aiming to follow in Cristiano Ronaldo's footsteps after slaying Barcelona

“Cristiano Ronaldo is the best footballer of all time. He inspires others and is also a good person off the field," George Ilenikhena said in an interview with Belgian newspaper Het Laatste Nieuws in January. "I watch his videos all the time. So, it should come as no surprise that Manchester United are my favourite club, right? Cristiano played there, didn’t he?"

As come-and-get-me pleas go, the 17-year-old's could hardly have been more emphatic. The Royal Antwerp starlet's comments also coincided with INEOS' minority takeover at Old Trafford, which finally saw Sir Jim Ratcliffe take control of football operations after a lengthy bidding process. The INEOS chairman has vowed to overhaul United's transfer policy with a focus on the development of promising young players, and sure enough, Ilenikhena is now one of the players on their radar ahead of the summer transfer window.

According to Belgian football journalist Sacha Tavolieri, the Red Devils are plotting to swoop for the youngster when the market reopens, with it reported that he is already being valued as high as €20 million (£17m/$22m).

Ilenikhena's status as a Ronaldo fan boy is not what has alerted United, though. Antwerp have a very special talent on their hands, one who already looks capable of making the step up to one of Europe's elite clubs...

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