Assessing Rhian Brewster’s Possible Loan Destinations

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Hot off a productive loan stint with Swansea in the Championship, Rhian Brester is a wanted man.

The 20-year-old striker scored eleven goals — ten in the league and another in the Playoffs — during his temporary stay in Wales and now, according to Neil Jones of Goal, Liverpool are fielding inquiries from several Premier League clubs for the England youth international.

Aston Villa, Newcastle, Brighton, Crystal Palace and Fulham have all thrown their hat into the ring and are looking to borrow Brewster next season, writes Jones.

The Reds, whose front three of Sadio Mane, Mohamed Salah and Firmino — barring injuries — is set in stone, will have a big decision on their hands before the season starts.

With the next campaign — owing to the Coronavirus throwing the cat amongst the organizational pigeons and causing fixture bedlam — being a concertinaed, intense slog with almost a ceaseless flow of fixtures, there will be rotation aplenty across the league and the reigning champions will be no different.

This may present chances to Brewster and others — including Neco Williams, Harvey Elliott, and Curtis Jones — with chances in the Liverpool first-team picture.

However, if links to Ismaila Sarr — or any other forward, for that matter —  have a foundation then the former Chelsea youth player would be better served taking on another loan move away from Anfield.

Should Brewster look to make a loan move elsewhere, then Brighton and Hove Albion — provided, of course, he plays often enough to justify a switch — would be the ideal destination.

Despite finishing 15th, the Seagulls impressed many with their ambitious and progressive brand of football.

Under the tutelage of the impressive Graham Potter, the south-coast team played an amorphous style and were well capable of switching formations in-game. Often, the Amex Stadium side would start a game with a variation of a back three formation but change, depending on how the game would pan out.

With the likes of Pascal Groß and Aaron Mooy pulling the strings, Brighton would often play pretty passing patterns — a style which will only be bolstered by the summer acquisition of Adam Lallana — and manufacture good openings only for the chances to be spurned.

The Seagulls, according to Understat, had an expected goals(XG) figure of 47, but only scored 39 goals. For context, Brighton — according to the quality of chances they create — ought to have scored eight more goals than they did. Potter’s charges only rate two goals behind sixth-placed Tottenham in the XG league table, showing how creative their play can be.

Over the course of a season, eight goals in a significant amount and, logically, the Blue and Whites would look to correct this weakness in the transfer market.

Leonardo Trossard, Aaron Connolly, Neal Maupay, and Alireza Jahanbakhsh carried the attacking can for Brighton, but all share in common the fact that they are wide forwards — players better served as the supporting cast — and not line leading, numbers 9’s.

This is where Brewster — who was the joint highest scorer in the Championship, alongside Saïd Benrahma, in the timeframe in which he played in the division, from January onwards — would fit in.

The U17 World Cup winner is instinctively sharp in the box, in the manner of a Jermain Defoe, and scores all manner of goals — free-kicks, taps in, long-range strikes — but there is more to Brewster’s game than what he offers inside the box.

Hard-working, willing to press, tactically tuned in, and capable of linking the play, the 20-year old could solve Brighton’s toothlessness in front of goal while also adding the benefit of not making the Seagulls change their style of play to accommodate him.

There would be merit, in one way or another, to joining Villa, Palace, Fulham or Newcastle but a spell with the Seagulls could really help Brewster soar.

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