Who is Alvin Ayman? In-demand Wolves wonderkid closing in on Liverpool transfer

Liverpool are close to agreeing a transfer to sign Wolves youngster Alvin Ayman and completing their first signing since the summer transfer window opened.

Ayman, 16, travelled with the Wolves first team for their away game against Manchester City last month and experienced a Premier League matchday for the first time. Despite not then making the 20-man squad, Wolves head coach Gary O'Neil - who spent six months at Liverpool as Barry Lewtas' Under-23s assistant manager during the 2020/21 season - afforded Ayman that exposure all the same.

That marked a meteoric rise for the teenager, who 12 months ago was still a scholar at Bradford City. He had been with the West Yorkshire club since under-9s, playing as a left-sided central defender and in midfield.

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With Wolves, Ayman joined their under-17s in South Korea for the K League’s inaugural International Youth Cup. He also received international recognition with England, being named a standby for the national team's under-17s last year.

Back at club level, Ayman scored for Wolves in their under-17 Premier League Cup semi-final against Leicester City in late January. Playing as a midfielder, Ayman finished with his first touch after coming on as a second-half substitute to seal a 3-1 win.

An under-21s debut came in March during a Premier League 2 match against Derby County. Ayman came in for praise from U21 head coach James Collins afterwards. “Alvin was diligent with his defending and really intelligent with his positioning of where he was defending," Collins told the club's website of Ayman.

The defender also featured for the final minutes of a 2-0 win away at Everton days later. Following that cameo, team-mate Tyler Roberts also praised the player. Roberts told the club's website Ayman "kept the same standard” after coming off the bench.

In an under-18s game against Newcastle United the following month, Ayman impressed with his distribution, switching the play to his teammate on the opposite flank on one notable occasion. He also almost forced an opening goal for the team with a dangerous ball into the box that Newcastle's goalkeeper spilt.

Then, in the second half, Ayman popped around the penalty spot and almost scored the opener, only to have his shot blocked. Playing predominantly as a defender across the season, he made seven appearances in the U18 Premier League North, including in a 4-2 win against Liverpool in April, on top of those two under-21s cameos.

In early May, the Express & Star reported that multiple 'big six' Premier League teams had interest in Ayman and were beginning to make approaches for the teenager. Liverpool now looks they are closing a deal to sign the versatile player.