Louis van Gaal
Louis van GaalGetty Images

Manchester United have beaten Premier League rivals Arsenal, Chelsea and Liverpool to take highly-rated Benfica starlets Joao Filipe dubbed the 'next Cristiano Ronaldo' and Joao Virginia for a trial at Old Trafford.

According to the Express, the two players are very highly rated by the Portuguese champions, and they were looking to tie Filipe and Virginia down to long-term deals. But the duo have rejected new deals in favour of a move to Old Trafford.

It is believed that the two players are regarded as the two outstanding talents to emerge in Portuguese football in recent years.

It is claimed that Filipe also had an offer from Spanish giants Barcelona, but it was rejected in favour of a trial with the Premier League big guns.

With multiple clubs interested in signing the two players, it now looks like the Red Devils have beaten them to reach an agreement with Benfica to take Filipe and Virginia on trial. If the duo impress the coaching staff at Carrington, they will be handed contracts to move to Old Trafford on a permanent basis.

Louis van Gaal has been known to put his trust in the youth from his days at Ajax and it looks like he has already performed a coup of sorts by landing the much coveted players from Benfica.

Meanwhile, Red Devils assistant manager Ryan Giggs is delighted that so many of United's World Cup stars will be travelling with the team for the pre-season tour of the USA. The players who went to the World Cup but exited early, England's Wayne Rooney and Spain's Mata are some of the big names that will be present with the team.

"It's worked out quite well. The lads who went out early in the World Cup can now travel with us for the pre-season tour. We've got a few lads here training now, who will have about two weeks under their belts before we play our first game in America," Giggs told United's official site.