Northern Ireland under-17 captain Ethan Galbraith will sign a three-year contract at Manchester United this weekend.
Galbraith, born in County Antrim, had two successful trials at the club last season, including playing in midfield for the Reds at the Liam Brady Tournament, an under-16 competition held at Arsenal’s Hale End Training ground between Utd, Arsenal, Bayern Munich and Juventus.
Galbraith had trials last season
After watching United play Liverpool in a 1-1 draw at Old Trafford, Galbraith signed a pre-contract with the club in the presence of Ryan Giggs and Head of Academy Nicky Butt, as well as Tony Coulter, the United scout who spotted him playing for Linfield under-16s.
This weekend, his move to United will be completed, signing a one-year scholarship deal to take him up to his 17th birthday, before a further two years with a professional contract.
Galbraith "buzzing for it"
Galbraith told the Irish Mirror that he’s “buzzing for it,” and “over the moon,” describing the move as “massive” for him.
“I’m just a teenager from Glengormley who has always wanted to play full-time football. So to sign a deal with a club like Manchester United is massive,” he continued.
Galbraith has grown up as an Arsenal fan and previously had trials and training sessions with Liverpool in 2015.
Now he’ll move into United’s under-18 squad for next season. As well as captaining his country’s under-17 side, he’s made his debut for the under-18 squad as well, at the age of 16.
Traoré also expected to sign
He’s expected to be one of a number of signings made by United for the under-18 side this transfer window. Last summer saw Feyenoord’s Tahith Chong arrive, as well as Josh Bohui. Former-PSG midfielder Aliou Badara Traoré is one expected signing, having had a trial in February with the club, scoring in a 7-0 friendly victory for the under-17s against Burnley.
Others will make way for these new signings, with Angel Gomes, Chong, Indy Boonen and Josh Bohui all potentially moving up to under-23s football.