Premier League runners-up Liverpool have been linked with a move for Exeter City star Matt Grimes.
Highly-rated Grimes, 18, is reportedly a target for fellow top-flight outfit Sunderland and the Reds are the latest to show an interest in the talented midfielder.
Liverpool have a former Grecian in their ranks, with former City manager Alex Inglethorpe now coaching the Merseysiders’ Under-21 side.
The Bristol Post reported that Bristol City are looking for another midfielder after it was revealed Grimes was out of their reach.
It goes on to add that the Robins have been keeping tabs on the teenager for several months and director of football Keith Burt has travelled to St James’s Park on a number of occasions to watch him in action.
But the club have given up on the hunt after it was revealed he has attracted interest from Premier League clubs, including Liverpool and Sunderland, and Championship side Norwich City.
It is believed that several clubs had scouts attend Exeter’s final game of the season away at Hartlepool in May, all with their eyes on Grimes.
City would be reluctant to sell the midfielder who won the player of the season award for 2013-14 but, with a number of clubs interested, they could be given an offer too good to turn down.
Grimes was awarded his first contract by City in April 2013 and made his Grecians debut on Auguest 17 in a 2-0 win over AFC Wimbledon.
He scored his first professional goal for the Grecians against Chesterfield in April.
His deflected strike opened the scoring at the Proact Stadium before his side eventually drew 1-1.
Other rumours suggest Grimes has attracted the attention of Manchester United but any Old Trafford targets are likely to be reviewed by new manager, and current Holland boss, Louis van Gaal upon his return from the World Cup in Brazil.
Grimes is under contract at City for another two seasons and his possible departure would be a huge blow to manager Paul Tisdale, who hopes to build on his young side's potential following a difficult campaign in Skybet League Two last season.
"We have gained a lot of experience and come through it," said Tisdale after his side eventually avoided relegation from the Football League.
“It gives everyone confidence going forward. Next year will be a new season, it will be a new dynamic and you can’t predict everything. You can’t predict how it is all going to piece together, but I wouldn’t do what I do if I didn’t find it a challenge and I didn’t find it exciting and motivating.”
Grimes was overlooked for the Exeter City young player of the year award last season, with the gong surprisingly going to first-year trainee James Byrne instead.