Liverpool have taken advantage of a red tape row to sign Barcelona youth prospect Bobby Adekanye.
Highly-rated Adekanye confirmed the move on Instagram on Thursday evening, saying: “I am very happy to sign for Liverpool.”
The Anfield side have moved to secure the 16-year-old’s services as a free agent after he was the subject of a dispute between Barcelona and FIFA.
Their disagreement was over the Spanish club’s recruitment of young players for their renowned academy at La Masia.
FIFA’s stance is Adekanye was signed by Barcelona illegally from Ajax in 2011 when he was 12, something the Catalan giants don’t believe was the case.
He was banned by world football’s governing body from playing competitively for Barcelona, who consequently sent the teenager on loan to PSV last season.
The Nigerian-born winger, a Dutch youth international, impressed during his stay in Holland and the 1988 European champions were keen to make his move permanent.
Barcelona’s preference was that he remained in the Netherlands until the matter was resolved with FIFA but no conclusion had been reached.
Adekanye – compared in style with fellow Dutchman Arjen Robben – therefore decided to act himself and cut his ties in Spain to pursue a move to Merseyside.