The Premier League are set to challenge the NextGen Series with an U21 European tournament of their own.

The Sun says Under-19 tournament NextGen already has competition next season from a UEFA-organised Champions League.

The Premier League's Under-21 concept is still in its early stages but clubs from Spain, Italy and France like the idea.

And that will only make recruitment and retention of sponsors and broadcasters even harder in an already tough market.

Last-16 ties in this season's NextGen start this week, with Liverpool, Chelsea, Spurs and Aston Villa all in action and Arsenal playing in March. But from next season, every club which qualifies for the Champions League will enter a team in UEFA's Under-19 version.