Real's chief international scout Julen Lopetegui has just returned from a month in Brazil monitoring the Copinha in Sao Paulo. He returned to Madrid armed with dossiers on the best of the 2,000 U18s which featured in the prestigious tournament.

Lopetegui's assistant, Antonio Vilches, left for Ghana on Sunday to scout the African Nations Cup. The trip was organised by IMG and Vilches is being accompanied by representatives from Atletico Madrid, Barcelona and Sevilla.

Meanwhile, Real director Miguel Angel Portugal is taking advantage of his links in the United States to keep tabs on three top American youngsters, says AS. High on that shortlist is Red Bull New York sensation Jozy Altidore.