Evan Ferguson gets big BBC treatment ahead of Man United clash
Pressure is for tyres, not Evan Ferguson...
Evan Ferguson, a breath of footballing fresh air. Still somehow just 18-years-old, the Ireland striker is the talk of the Premier League after becoming just the fourth player under 19 to have notched a league hat-trick.
Joining the illustrious company of the likes of Liverpool's former heroes Robbie Fowler and Michael Owen, Ferguson is embracing the step-up from bit-part player to Brighton's main man.
After missing out on Ireland's dispiriting international window, the former Bohemians youngster is in line to return for the Seagulls on their trip to Old Trafford this weekend.
Having grown up a Man United fan, the game is a significant milestone in Ferguson's fledgling career, and ahead of it, he sat down with BBC's Football Focus to discuss his meteoric rise and how he deals with the pressures of a Premier League career at such a young age.
Evan Ferguson on dealing with pressure ahead of Man United clash:
Most young footballers might resonate with having a parent or coach who drove their ambition with expectation, but not Ferguson, who told the BBC that his father, who himself played for Shamrock Rovers and Bohemians, adopted a more hands-off approach, saying;
"It was completely different in Ireland. Dad used to play, Grandad used to play, sort of everyone in my family is known to have played football, so I think it's just a big football family- I was born into it.
"My Dad never put any pressure on me. It was more just me I think, enjoying playing with the neighbours and all the kids around me. "
This method of mentoring clearly bore fruit, when Ferguson went on to make national headlines as he made his Bohemians senior debut at just 14-years-old in a pre-season friendly against Chelsea. Reflecting on that remarkable achievement, the striker said;
"I think you notice more afterwards what people were saying, and I was like "Is that not normal?", but then I realised that no, it wasn't.
"There was no pressure on me because no one is expecting anything out of a young kid, so I just went out there and tried to do something."
Concluding the brief interview, Ferguson was asked his thoughts on being compared to Bayern Munich and England striker Harry Kane, along with where he sees his long-term future in the game being spent.
"I take little bits out of his (Kane's) game and try to bring them into my own game. I see why people say that we are a little bit similar but people are always just trying to compare me to another person, aren't they?
"I don't know. I'm just a relaxed, chilled out person... It's a good question but I think it's hard to say right now. We'll see how this season goes, a full season, because last season I only sort of came in half way."
- Assessing the FAI’s managerial options if Stephen Kenny leaves Ireland post
- Former Liverpool team-mate doesn’t buy Jordan Henderson’s excuse for leaving club
- Roy Keane as Ireland manager could work as long as one condition is met
- Sinclair Armstrong gives incredible interview after “whirlwind few days”
- FAI reportedly line up Lee Carsley to replace Stephen Kenny as ex-Liverpool boss discussed