Brighton & Hove Albion midfielder Alexis Mac Allister has showered praise on ‘amazing’ Evan Ferguson following his performance in Tuesday night’s 2-0 success over Bournemouth.
The Republic of Ireland striker slotted home Kaoru Mitoma’s pass with a cheeky backheel to give Roberto De Zerbi’s side the lead in the 28th minute before Julio Enciso sealed the three points in second-half stoppage time.
Ferguson’s first-half strike took his tally to eight goals in all competitions this season as the 18-year-old continues to establish himself as one of the best young strikers in Europe.
World Cup winner Mac Allister who was replaced in the 73rd minute by Enciso after picking up a knock, recognised Ferguson’s contribution to keeping the team’s European dream alive.
“Evan is an amazing player,” Mac Allister told BBC. “He was not having his best evening, but he showed his quality. We are really happy for him – we know how important he is.”
Ferguson has delivered the goods for Brighton since linking up with the first-team squad last summer, having progressed through the club’s youth ranks.
The young sensation returned to the starting line-up in place of Danny Welbeck after missing Saturday’s goal glutted 3-3 draw with Brentford because of a minor injury.
However, his predatory instinct was on show in the midweek victory, and Seagulls boss De Zerbi shared Mac Allister’s opinion about Ferguson’s very high ceiling.
“Evan is very young,” De Zerbi said. “His best quality is to score and it’s a very important quality, but I think he has potential to improve in other parts of the pitch.
“I think we can achieve our target with Evan. I’m proud for him – I think the same for our scouting in our club. He can become a great player.”
The Irish striker has delivered four goals and two assists despite starting just six of his 11 league appearances for De Zerbi’s side this term.
His impressive performances and eye for goal has piqued the interest of Chelsea, Manchester United and Tottenham Hotspur, who are closely monitoring the youngster’s development.
It remains to be seen if Brighton will sanction a sale right after his breakout campaign but will likely demand a substantial figure to part ways with the impressive forward.
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