Ballymena United manager claims Celtic and Rangers want Matthew Shevlin on trial

Ballymena United manager Glenn Ferguson claims there is plenty of interest in striker Matthew Shevlin.

Ballymena United manager Glenn Ferguson has told the Belfast Telegraph that striker Matthew Shevlin has interest from a number of clubs.

Shevlin, 16, is considered to be one of the brightest young prospects in Northern Irish football, and clubs are now lining up to take a punt on his potential.

Ahead of the January transfer window, Shevlin is undergoing trial periods with clubs in England and Scotland, with Premier League side Crystal Palace taking a look at him last week.

Now though, his manager Glenn Ferguson has told the Belfast Telegraph that after 'very positive' feedback from Palace over his trial period, a number of other clubs are hoping to assess Shevlin, including Old Firm rivals Celtic and Rangers.

"He did very well at Crystal Palace but he also has lots of options to consider with the interest from clubs including Rangers, Celtic, Everton, Charlton and Sheffield United who hope to take him on trial next week," said Ferguson.

"The feedback from Palace was very positive and that's not surprising as Matthew scored quite a few goals in the matches he played in. That's going to leave a big impression," he added.

The teenage striker is now considering his options ahead of January, and whilst the Scottish Championship may not be seen as a glamorous move, Rangers' recent history with Northern Irish players could weigh heavily in Shevlin's decision.

The likes of Steven Davis, Dean Shiels, David Healy, Andy Little and Kyle Lafferty have all made big impacts at Ibrox in recent years, and the prospect of working under Mark Warburton - a manager known for his work developing young players - may also be appealing.

Still, moves to big clubs such as Celtic or Everton are hard to turn down, and with interest building in Shevlin's signature, the teenager may have a big decision to make.

Register for EVERTON team updates

Register for HITC Sport - Daily Dispatch