|Alex Chamberlain will be under scrutiny as United take on Southampton|
United face Southampton this weekend in an all important FA Cup tie. But more than that, the boss and his team of coaches would be eager to watch Alex Chamberlain’s performance for the Saints.
The England U-18 star has been a transfer target of many premier league clubs with Arsenal and Manchester United leading the chase. The 17 year old is said to possess express pace along with an eye for scoring goals. According to scout Gordon Watson, Alex possesses more potential than Theo Walcott did at the same age. Walcott, an ex-Saint who left for Arsenal in 2006 was not as good a prospect when he was at St.Mary’s. “He’s got exceptional maturity with the ball. No one wants to put too much pressure on him, but he’s got more potential than Theo, because his delivery is so much better in the final third. He very seldom gives away the ball, and he turns defence into attack so quickly. He is on track to play at the highest level for a top six team."
According to some insiders at Old Trafford, a 10m bid for the player has already been made. “The boss has made his move and now it's down to the lad and his family to decide - but United are a massive club to turn down."
Chamberlain, who joined the Southampton Football Academy at the age of 7 is the club’s second youngest player ever to start a game, behind Theo Walcott. His 6 goals in 24 games for the Saints could be termed impressive and thus the player was called up for England U-18 side for the match against Poland in November. He has been shortlisted for the England U-19 team set to face Germany in February.
Though, United legend Paul Ince believes that the best thing for Alex is to stay with the Saints for another year or two. Or, the next best thing is that a premier league club signs him now and loan him back to Southampton for 6 months. "What’s the point of Chamberlain going to a club like Liverpool or Arsenal? He will just be stuck in the reserves. Yeah, he can get a big contract now with one of the top clubs, but that’s no good for the education of the kid. I can tell the way Chamberlain plays he loves his football and he can score goals."