Watford have reportedly beaten Arsenal and Tottenham Hotspur to the signing of Stevenage youngster Ben Wilmot.

The 18-year-old has been linked with a move to the Premier League after putting in a string of impressive performances with League Two Boro.

National reports claim the Hornets have jumped to the front of the queue in the race to sign the 18-year-old and have agreed a £1.5 million fee.

A deal could be agreed this week to lay the foundations for Wilmot to complete his switch in the summer transfer window.

The proposed move comes after Stevenage chairman Steve Wallace revealed on Saturday that an agreement for Wilmot’s transfer could be completed this week.

“Ben came back from international duty and we have had developments that suggest a deal will be agreed shortly for him to move when the window opens,” he said.

“We have had interest from Premier League and Championship clubs, which is not surprising when Ben is recognised by England as being one of the top four centre halves at his age level, with the other three coming from Man City, Chelsea and Spurs.

“We have made public our valuation and the closer we are getting to that the more likely it is that Ben will move.”

Wilmot has made 15 appearances for Stevenage this term and has previously been selected for England’s Under-19s.

Watford’s reported interest is little surprise considering their need for reinforcements at centre-back, which has been a problem position for the club this term.

Injuries and inconsistency at the heart of defence has cost the Hornets throughout the campaign and have looked shaky defensively in recent weeks.

Their defending at set-pieces has left plenty to be desired and both Bournemouth and Burnley have profited from their flaws in the Hornets’ past two outings.