A former Manchester United youth player -once tipped to take the Premier League by storm- appeared in court yesterday accused of rape.

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John Cofie, 30, denied the charge at Manchester Minshull Street crown court for the offence that allegedly took place in 2019.

Cofie, along with co-defendant Nathan Stuart, is accused of raping a woman in Trafford, Greater Manchester.

Cofie famously became the youngest ever £1million footballer when Sir Alex Ferguson signed him from Burnley for the youth team at age 14.

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However, wonderkid Cofie’s Red Devils career never took off and he never made a full appearance for the side.

Instead he spent lengthy periods on loan at clubs including Sheffield United and Belgian side Royal Antwerp.

In 2013, after being released from the club, Cofie had spells at Barnsley, Crawley Town and Wrexham – without pushing on.

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After retiring age 27, Cofie now works as a football coach at a Lancashire school.

The Ghanian born football ace still has many high profile friends he met through Manchester United.

Both defendants deny the charge.

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