Transfer news: Manchester City fend off Barcelona to sign 'the next Lionel Messi' Brahim Abdelkader Diaz - reports

The youngster has attracted attention all over Europe but City are said to have won the race for his signature

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The Independent Football

Manchester City have reportedly won the race to sign the ‘next Lionel Messi’ after beating off competition from Barcelona to sign 14-year-old Brahim Abdelkader Diaz from Malaga’s youth academy.

Diaz has been attracting attention from Europe’s top clubs, with a number of videos displaying the teenager’s natural skill and ability surfacing on the internet. With initial reports suggesting that Barcelona leading the way in the hunt for his signature, it now appears City have beaten them to the punch after agreeing a deal with his current club.

A figure believed to be £300,000 will be paid up front, with the Manchester club ready to shell out up to £2.4m dependent on what he achieves at the Etihad Stadium.

Despite his young age, Pere Guardiola – the brother of Bayern Munich manager Pep and current agent of Liverpool striker Luis Suarez – has been at the heart of the negotiations, and figures of between £30m-£40m have floated about should the wonderkid go on to reach his touted potential.

Watch a video of Brahim Abdelkader Diaz in action below: