• Premier League

Stoke beat Madrid and United to sign Ngoy

ESPN staff
October 12, 2013
Mark Hughes fended off the likes of Manchester United and Real Madrid to sign Julien Ngoy © PA Photos

Stoke City manager Mark Hughes has beaten off a host of illustrious clubs to secure the signing of Belgian starlet Julien Ngoy.

Hughes recruited the latest teenager after a short trial spell at the club's Clayton Wood training complex - despite competition from Real Madrid, Arsenal and Manchester United.

Stoke have confirmed to ESPN that the deal for the 15-year-old has been completed and he has signed forms to join the club's Category A Academy.

Chief executive Tony Scholes and technical director Mark Cartwright have been at pains to keep the signing under wraps and it has emerged that the youngster actually formally agreed to move to the Potteries two weeks ago.

Ngoy is the latest in a long line of Belgian talent to move to England and is already part of the Belgium under-16 team.

Damien Francis, a representative of Ngoy's agency said: "He's started well, so we're just going to see how he progresses and gets on.

"In Belgium, he plays for the national team so we've got high hopes for him. For a 15-year-old he's very talented. If he keeps his feet on the ground and works hard, the sky's the limit for him.

"He's a young lad, so he's got to keep his feet on the ground, and work hard in order to make it. He's done nothing in the game, in reality, because he's got a long career ahead of him."

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