Former Everton academy boss Martin Waldron has lifted the lid on how they'd work the junior transfer market.
Waldron admits recruiting from rival junior clubs is always key to building teams.
He told the Liverpool Echo: “The most important part of an Academy is the pre-Academy boys, who are not signed.
“The players aged six, seven or eight because when you reach the Academy stage 50% of your youth team, the u-18s, comes from that group.
“Although in the example of the Kieran Dowell group, I think there were 12 players who were eventually signed from that six-eight age group. If you don't sign them then you don't have that base of players and end up spending on under-9s-u-18s recruitment and it costing and costing. We did buy a few players for that group, at aged 11 – Tom Davies came from Tranmere and we also signed Nathan Broadhead from Wrexham.
“I would eventually take over the Academy recruitment department and brought the local, national and international department together. I also had big assistance from Robert Elstone because if I said I wanted to sign someone, he would back me 100%.
“And now, in my role with the agency, I'm still looking for the best players."