Local rivals Manchester United and Manchester City sent scouts to watch Sporting Lisbon winger Gelson Martins in the club’s Champions League tie with Real Madrid on Tuesday night, according to The Sun.

The Premier League giants are among a number of Europe’s top sides monitoring the youngster, with representatives from Chelsea, Barcelona and Bayern Munich also rumoured to be in attendance.

Martins has been with last season’s Primeira Liga runners-up since 2010 and made his debut for the senior side in August 2015 as a late substitute against Benfica.

The 21-year-old has gone on to establish himself as a first-team regular at Sporting and has already provided seven assists in 16 outings this term.

The Cape Verde-born star made his Portugal debut against Andorra in October and has since appeared against the Faroe Islands and Latvia during the European champions’ World Cup 2018 qualification campaign.

Sporting are renowned for producing home-grown talent, having also developed former Manchester United wingers Cristiano Ronaldo and Nani.

They will doubtless be hoping to keep hold of their latest prodigy for the foreseeable future, but whether they can resist the inevitable interest from Europe’s top leagues remains to be seen.

Martins played the full 90 minutes against Madrid but was powerless to prevent his team losing 2-1.


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