Birmingham City are said to have increased their asking price for young defender Rico Browne to over £1 million, with Football Insider reporting that the change in price has stalled the interest of the likes of Tottenham Hotspur and West Ham United.
The 17-year-old centre back is amongst some of the brightest young prospects to be coming through the ranks of the Blues’ academy system at present and his rise has seemingly not gone unnoticed by clubs elsewhere, with Brighton said to have also joined the aforementioned London clubs in the race for his signature.
Browne’s future at the Midlands club has been the subject of much debate recently, with it being reported that the Blues had allowed the player to go trial with the Hammers whilst Spurs are also said to have offered the player an 18-month contract.
However it now appears that the teenager has returned to Birmingham with his future still very much up in their air after the Championship side chose to increase their valuation of the prospect.
Quiz: Have each of these 24 ex-Birmingham City players retired or not?
Originally born in Manchester, Browne is currently coming to the end of the first year of his two-year scholarship with the club.
Once again we are seeing an example of a young player being chased by bigger clubs as his current side struggles to get him tied down to a professional contract.
It is utter madness to see a player of Browne’s age being put through such stress as a teenager and it certainly feels like something has to give with regards to his future at the club.
The Blues have already seen Calum Scanlon depart for Liverpool in recent months and it appears that Browne could be next out the door if a potential suitor meets the asking price.
You can fully understand why the club wants such a fee however it has to be questioned as to whether they are acting with the player’s best interests at heart.