While nowhere near as effective as Lyon’s, Marseille’s youth academy has produced some interesting talents over the years, like Mehdi Benatia and Samir Nasri.
Boubacar Kamara and Maxime Lopez are two others who could have bright futures ahead of them, and they might soon be joined by a third: Isaac Lihadji.
The France U17 forward, still only 16, has been attracting attention around Europe, with clubs such as Manchester United travelling to watch him in action.
La Provence on Thursday/Friday are the ones reporting this, claiming the Red Devils, as well as Barcelona, Juventus and the two Milan clubs, have been following Lihadji’s progress in recent months.
With a youth contract expiring in the summer of 2020, Marseille know they will have to be very convincing if they want to sign him to a professional deal and keep him around beyond his 18th birthday, especially with such big clubs circling around.
Should Manchester United manage to acquire the 16-year-old over the next year or so, he would join a number of talents in the youth academy recently signed from abroad, including Noam Emeran, whose acquisition from Amiens was announced just after the January transfer window.
The two prospects also know each other, having featured in the same France U16 team back in 2017 to face Russia in a friendly.