Crystal Palace starlet Wilfried Zaha has been cautioned to ignore the attention of Liverpool and Newcastle United, after the club's captain warned a move could damage his fledgling career.
Zaha, 19, has been the subject of increased speculation in recent weeks following a number of impressive displays in this season's carling Cup, including the 2-1 win over Manchester United in last month's quarter-final.
Crystal Palace are now favourites to progress to a Wembley final date against either Liverpool or Manchester City, after beating Cardiff City 1-0 in their semi-final first leg on Tuesday.
And Zaha has attracted the attention of a number of Premier League clubs - including Liverpool and Newcastle - as the Eagles also push for a play-off place in the Championship.
However, club captain Paddy McCarthy has urged the youngster to reject purported interest from Liverpool and Newcastle in favour of staying at Selhurst Park beyond the end of the season, as he believes a move away could stunt his development.
"Wilfried is a special talent, probably the most naturally gifted individual I have come across in my career, and this is the perfect club for him at the moment," Paddy McCarthy is quoted on ESPN Soccernet.
"Every week, you see the improvement in these kids because they are being managed the right way. It would be criminal for these lads to move on too soon in their careers."
McCarthy warned the winger that he is in danger of following former Palace wunderkind John Bostock into obscurity, should he be tempted by the Premier League.
Bostock became the youngest Palace player to start a game when he made his debut aged 15, but the midfielder has endured a frustrating three years after moving to Tottenham in 2008 and McCarthy believes Zaha should learn from his former team-mate's mistake.
"[Crystal Palace manager] Dougie Freedman won't stand in their way if they need to move on - but he won't let them leave too early, as we have seen with the likes of John Bostock," McCarthy added.
"I'm sure Wilfried will be with us for the second leg against Cardiff, and to stay involved in this fantastic journey we've been on."