West Ham United are delighted to announce the signing of highly-rated midfielder Ravel Morrison from Manchester United.

Morrison, who will celebrate his 19th birthday on Thursday, is considered to be one of the finest prospects to have emerged from the Red Devils' Academy in many years. He has joined West Ham on a three and a half year contract for an undisclosed fee.

The England Under-18 international made his first-team debut at the age of 17 in a League Cup win over Wolverhampton Wanderers in October 2010 before helping Manchester United to win the FA Youth Cup in 2011.

After making two further League Cup appearances this term and with his contract set to expire at Old Trafford this summer, Morrison has decided to seek regular first-team football with the Hammers.

"I'm really pleased to have signed," Morrison said. "The move has happened very quickly and I'm looking forward to hopefully moving up to the Premier League with West Ham soon. I'm an attacking player and I'm hoping to get the fans on their feet.

"I met with Sam Allardyce this morning and he welcomed me to the club. I also played with Robert Hall in the England team and I know him well so that will be really helpful to have someone here that I know."

Born in Wythenshawe in the south of Manchester, Morrison joined Manchester United as a schoolboy and immediately caught the eye with his creative talents.

After scoring in the FA Youth Cup against Chelsea as a 15-year-old, Morrison signed a scholarship before penning his first professional contract on his 17th birthday.

The 2010/11 season was a memorable one for the young attacking midfielder or deep-lying forward, who made his first-team debut before helping Manchester United's Under-18s to lift the FA Youth Cup, scoring against Newcastle United and Liverpool before netting twice in a 4-1 aggregate final win over Sheffield United.

Touted as having 'the potential to be one of the real stars of his generation' on Manchester United's official website, Morrison has also had his talents recognised at international level, appearing for England at U16, U17 and U18 levels and being called up for the U19 squad in November 2011.