With the 2020/21 season coming to a close, plenty of clubs across the country will be starting to make the plans for the summer transfer window, which is now just a few months away.
As well as eyeing up players to strengthen their own squad, certain clubs will also be looking to secure loan deals for their younger players, to give them the opportunity to improve and develop.
One of those clubs is Manchester City, with the Premier League leaders possessing a vast array of players in their academy who will be eyeing up first-team opportunities, and one of those players at The Etihad who finds themselves in that position, is Liam Delap.
As exclusively revealed by Football League World, no fewer than three Championship sides, Derby County, Stoke City and AFC Bournemouth are all interested in bringing Delap in on loan for next season.
Delap is of course, a former Derby academy player, and it now seems as though City have a decision about just what will be best for the 18-year-old next season.
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The striker has already shown he can compete at first-team level this season with a handful of first-team appearances – even netting against Bournemouth in the League Cup.
Indeed, Delap continues to send reminders to City about his ability, scoring in their FA Youth Cup thrashing of Birmingham on Friday night, before scoring a hat-trick for the club’s Under 23s in their 7-1 win over Southampton on Monday, taking his tally to 19 goals in 14 leagues appearances this season.
With that in mind, those performances from Delap mean City are soon going to have to make a decision about whether to keep him as part of their setup for next season – something that may be influenced by their own attacking options, with Sergio Aguero’s contract coming to an end this summer – or to give him the opportunity of regular senior Championship football with a temporary move elsewhere.
Whatever happens, there can be no doubting that Delap possesses the potential and confidence required to make a big first-team impact in the future, meaning City will no doubt be desperate to keep him at The Etihad in the long-term at least.