Rhian Brewster is some talent. Perhaps the biggest winner of Liverpool’s pre-season, even if his match time dwindled towards the latter end of it, the 19-year-old striker is looking set to emerge onto the big stage over the coming months.
His journey to the top – halted by last season’s injury that kept him out for the best part of a year – has been a long, carefully planned progression, though.
Brewster knew from a very early age that he wanted to play for a club where he would be given the best possible chance to make it at senior level, and the former Chelsea youth star knew that was not going to happen at Stamford Bridge.
In an excellent piece in the Liverpool ECHO, which is definitely worth taking a look at, it was outlined how Brewster picked the Reds himself at 14, safe in the knowledge that the Academy is the best place for young players to develop in this country.
It’s not everywhere that you get one-on-one coaching sessions from Steve McManaman, Robbie Fowler and Steve Heighway, while Michael Beale, who was Brewster’s coach at Chelsea before moving to the Reds’ Academy, was also crucial in him coming north.
At 14, Brewster moved to Merseyside from London when more lucrative offers were there for him to take. His dad, in that excellent piece in the ECHO, says money never came into the equation for the young forward.
His father Ian explained: “I gave him a scenario [when he was 14]. I said, ‘If I gave you 20 grand to stay at Chelsea, or ten grand to go to Reading but you’ll play every week, what would you do?’ He said, ‘I’d go to Reading, Dad.’
“I tried to call his bluff: ‘You’d go to Reading when you could be getting 20 grand at Chelsea? Why would you do that?’ He said, ‘Because I’d be playing every week in front of thousands of people.’”
It’s no wonder that Jurgen Klopp trusts Brewster to replace Daniel Sturridge this season. Not many young players have the maturity to make the right decision for their career at that age.
Brewster has unlimited potential – and he knows exactly how to get the most out of himself.