Big games make big players. Big game experience is crucial for youngsters who want to move onto the next stage of their careers, these baptisms of fire can give a great insight into what type of player a prodigy will go on to become – as such, Rhian Brewster featuring in the playoffs for Swansea City could be critical for his career.
Klopp’s boy wonder
It is no secret that Jürgen Klopp rates Rhian Brewster highly, the German has regularly spoken about his admiration for the England youth international.
The fact that Klopp made sure that Brewster was on the bench for the Reds’ Champions League win in Madrid is a major indicator of the faith that the boss has in the 20-year-old.
The boss wanted to fold the striker into the first team in the last couple of seasons but a serious injury stalled the forward’s progress, leaving him on the periphery of the first XI until he was eventually loaned out to Swansea City.
Since joining Swansea on loan in January we have seen Brewster showcase his undeniable ability.
The youngster has been pivotal to the Swans’ dramatic charge to the playoffs, netting 10 goals during his loan spell, including a long range thunderbolt on a dramatic final day of the season.
Linking up with his former England youth coach Steve Cooper has been a help with the manager getting the very best out of the Liverpool youngster.
Brewster in playoffs
The Championship playoff final is one of the most lucrative one off games in world sport. Winning promotion to the Premier League is reportedly worth around £170m to a club.
The pressure of the playoffs is intense, it is a ticket to the best competition in the world, it means the world to the fans and it means a payday for the owners.
If Rhian Brewster is to make it at Liverpool then experience in the Championship playoffs could prove critical.
The Reds have been to three European finals under Jürgen Klopp, you don’t get there by beating Barnsley and Luton at home. You get there by beating Barcelona over two legs.
Playing in a high pressure, two legged tie is vital experience for Brewster. The Swans won the first leg narrowly, beating Brentford 1-0. Brewster was unlucky to not get on the scoresheet – his movement and pressuring were impressive but it just wasn’t his day.
If the Swansa can keep their heads this week and make the playoff final then we will likely get a decisive glimpse into just how Brewster plays when the pressure is on. If he keeps his head or not, the experience will be vital for his development.