Tottenham have offered a contract to Birmingham City defender Rico Browne, Football Insider can reveal.
But West Ham are in pole position to seal the signing of the 17-year-old centre-back ahead of the summer.
Football Insider revealed last week that Birmingham had granted permission for Browne to head to West Ham on a trial.
😮 What a performance from this young man!
Rico Browne only turned 1️⃣6️⃣ last month and told BluesTV that tonight was the best night of his young football career so far.
— Birmingham City FC (@BCFC) January 15, 2020
An Irons source has told Football Insider he arrived on Monday and will be have an extended spell at the club, which will include youth-team matches.
Browne has already had a trial at Tottenham that ended last month and impressed in a match against Arsenal.
He was subsequently verbally offered an 18-month contract by the Londoners.
They have yet to follow that up with a written offer and that opened the door for West Ham to make a move.
The youngster’s future at Birmingham is shrouded in major doubt as the club look to overhaul their youth set-up.
Browne, who played in the FA Youth Cup last year while still at school, is coming to the end of the first year of his two-year scholarship at Birmingham.
This comes at a time when the club are considering ditching their Under-23s and Under-18s teams and changing to B and C teams in the future.
The closure of the academy would save costs and see Birmingham copying the model at Brentford, a club regarded as punching well above their weight in terms of recruitment.
Birmingham have already lost one high-profile teenager to an elite Premier League club this year.
England youth international Calum Scanlon, 15, joined Liverpool in January for a fee of around £500,000.