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Premier level for mannng

GALWAY FC lad Ryan Manning is in line to become the Airtricity League's next export as Tottenham and Everton are both keen to offer the Ireland U19 cap a chance in the Premier League.

The 18-year-old starred for Galway FC last season as they won promotion to the Premier Division, but Manning already had experience at League of Ireland level as he made his senior debut with Mervue United in 2013.

But Galway FC - to be renamed Galway United for next season - have accepted that Manning won't be at the club in 2015 as a move to England is imminent.

Derby County have already taken the teenager on trial and Ipswich Town were also keen but interest is now on a Premier League level with both Everton and Spurs reportedly ready to make a formal offer.

Everton know that their £60,000 purchase of Seamus Coleman was one of the club's best-ever deals and the Toffees would be willing to take another gamble on attacking prospect Manning.

In recent seasons only a handful of players have made an immediate leap from the League of Ireland to the English top flight with Seamus Coleman, David Meyler and Roy O'Donovan all breaking into the side in the Premier League soon after a transfer from the LOI, while others like Kevin Doyle, Shane Long and Stephen Ward worked their way up.

But Spurs and Everton have both done their homework on the Galway lad and feel he is a good prospect.

"It looks like Ryan is going to go away to England, it's just case of where he ends up. There is nothing signed or agreed yet but there is interest in the lad so the club are waiting to see how it works out," Galway boss Tommy Dunne told The Herald.

"But it's not a case of Ryan going away on trial here and there, I think we are beyond that level now."


Manning caught the eye while playing for the Ireland U19s in their successful European Championship qualifying campaign last week where he set up the only goal of the game in a win over Malta in the opening match of the tournament and he also claimed an assist in a 1-1 draw with Switzerland.

He had also made a name for himself as part of Galway's promotion-winning side, Dunne's outfit earning a place in the Premier Division for next season by beating UCD in a playoff.

"Ryan was very good for us last season," says Dunne.

"It was a tough year for him as he was doing his Leaving Cert while playing for us but he came through with flying colours.

"He was working hard on his studies so we tried not to put too many demands on him in the first half of the season. Then he picked up an injury or two so he was really only coming good towards the end of the season.

"He is a good player, he can play in different positions, he can play as a No. 10 or out wide and he has a very good left foot. If he does go to England he has a good chance," added Dunne, who is working on adding to his squad for the Premier Division campaign.