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One of the most highly-rated young prospects in the country, Republic of Ireland striker Evan Ferguson has penned a new contract at Brighton to keep him at the Seagulls until 2029.

Making his senior debut as a 16-year-old for Brighton as a substitute in a 2-1 victory over Cardiff City in the EFL Cup in August 2021, Ferguson has since gone on to establish himself as a valuable first team member.

Not long turned 19, the Irishman has already racked up 33 Premier League appearances with an impressive 11 goals to his name.

Ferguson's blistering hat-trick in a 3-1 win for Brighton against Eddie Howe's Newcastle in September saw the striker reach 10 goal contributions in the Premier League - becoming just the second non-English player aged 18 or younger to achieve this feat in England's top flight since Spaniard Cesc Fabregas.

We explore Ferguson's upbringing in Ireland the trajectory which has seen him grow into one of the most talked-about young talents in the Premier League.

As a kid and as a striker, you want to grow up and score as many goals as you can in the Premier League. When you get a hat-trick in the Premier League it's a good day. I had family here, so it was definitely good for them!

- Evan Ferguson after his hat-trick v Newcastle in September

Premier League

From Bettystown to Brighton

Growing up in Bettystown, a picturesque coastal village around 50km from Dublin, Ferguson is the son of former Irish professional footballer Barry, who was on the books of clubs such as Coventry City, Colchester United and Shamrock Rovers during his playing days, and interestingly an English mother which made him eligible to play for Gareth Southgate's Three Lions.

A Manchester United fan who turned out for prestigious Dublin schoolboys club St Kevin's Boys, Ferguson was eventually snapped up by League of Ireland side Bohemians' academy.

Making his senior debut for Bohemians aged just 14 in a pre-season friendly against Chelsea in July 2019, setting up Bohs' equaliser on the day, it was clear from a very early age that Ferguson was a prodigious young talent who was destined to make the move to English football sooner rather than later.

So it would prove in January 2021, with Brighton fending off interest from the likes of Liverpool and Manchester United to bring Ferguson to the Amex Stadium.

Ferguson made just three professional appearances for Bohemians in Ireland before transferring to Premier League side Brighton aged 16 in January 2021. 

Star in the making

Fast forward just two years and Ferguson is already one of the most feared strikers in the toughest league in the world.

At 19 years old, Ferguson already possesses both the physical stature and football brain of a player far beyond his tender years.

At 6ft 2in tall, the Irishman can provide a focal point up front, with his size and strength allowing him to hold his own in physical exchanges against even the most robust of Premier League defenders.

The aspect of Ferguson's game which has arguably impressed most for Roberto De Zerbi's Brighton so far, however, is his goalscoring instincts and knack of being in the right positions at the right time.

His opening goal for the Seagulls in his hat-trick against Newcastle showcased this perfectly, with Ferguson displaying razor sharp anticipation and reactions to be first on hand to follow up Billy Gilmour's effort from outside the box which was parried into the striker's path by Nick Pope.

His second strike was far easier on the eye, with the Irishman demonstrating his ability to score a variety of goals from different distances after collecting a pass from Gilmour around 25 yards from goal before bending a sumptuous effort past the helpless Pope in the Magpies' goal.

His qualities are enough to become a great player - one of the top goalscorers in Europe.

- Roberto De Zerbi

Ferguson's style of play and penchant for goals has drawn comparisons with England captain Harry Kane, with the teenager having admitted to have studied the Bayern Munich striker's game.

Brighton seems the perfect place for Ferguson to be at this stage of his career, with the Seagulls having earned an esteemed reputation for offering talented youngsters first team opportunities before allowing them to grow and evolve at the right pace.

In Roberto De Zerbi, Ferguson will be able to learn from a progressive manager with a track record of developing young talent, with the Italian seemingly keen to hone the young striker's overall skillset beyond his natural inclination for goals, in order to help propel him to the top level. 

It has also become evident that Brighton will not stand in the way of their prized young assets making the move to some of the biggest clubs in the country should the right offer come in, as was demonstrated this summer with Alexis Mac Allister and Moises Caicedo's £35m and £115m transfers to Liverpool and Chelsea respectively.

Given the level of potential Ferguson is currently showing, it would come as little surprise should vultures begin to swirl to prise him away from Brighton for comparably substantial money in the not too distant future.

He can finish with his left or right, he is strong, quick and his hold up play is also very good. He is a natural goalscorer.

- Pascal Gross

Ferguson is regarded as the next big hope of the Republic of Ireland national team, and has netted three goals in his first eight caps for his country since making his debut last year.

Evan Ferguson In Numbers:

Premier League 2023/24 Goals/90*:

1) Callum Wilson (Newcastle) - 1.30
2) Alexander Isak (Newcastle) - 1.10
3) Erling Haaland (Man City) - 1.06
4) Son Heung-min (Tottenham) - 0.81
5) Hwang Hee-chan (Wolves) - 0.79
6) Evan Ferguson (Brighton) - 0.77
7) Mo Salah (Liverpool) - 0.76
8) Darwin Nunez (Liverpool) - 0.70
9) Jarrod Bowen (West Ham) - 0.64
10) Nicolas Jackson (Chelsea) - 0.59
*Minimum of 5 90s played

Premier League 2023/24 Top Shots on Target per 90*:

1) Darwin Nunez (Liverpool) - 2.29
2) Callum Wilson (Newcastle) - 2.23
3) Evan Ferguson (Brighton) - 2.01
4) Erling Haaland (Man City) - 1.93
5) Alexander Isak (Newcastle) - 1.83
6) Son Heung-min (Tottenham) - 1.63
7) Nicolas Jackson (Chelsea) - 1.54
8) James Maddison (Tottenham) - 1.53
9) Ollie Watkins (Aston Villa) - 1.42
10) Jarrod Bowen (West Ham) - 1.27
*Minimum of 5 90s played

Top Goal Involvements (G&A) amongst U18s players in Europe's Top 5 Leagues 2022/23:

1) Youssoufa Moukoko (Borrusia Dortmund) - 11
2) Rayan Cherki (Lyon) - 10
3) Evan Ferguson (Brighton) - 8
4) Alejandro Balde (Barcelona) - 7
5) Julio Enciso (Brighton) - 6
6) Habib Diarra (Strasbourg) - 6
7) Gavi (Barcelona) - 6
8) Wilfried Gnonto (Leeds Utd) - 6
9) Mathys Tel (Bayern Munich) - 5
10) Eliesse Ben Seghir (Monaco) - 5

Evan Ferguson & Brighton Odds:

Evan Ferguson:

Premier League Outrights:

  • Top Goalscorer - 66/1
  • Top Goalscorer Without Erling Haaland - 16/1



  • To Finish in Premier League Top 4 - 7/1
  • To Finish in Premier League Top 6 - 13/8
  • To Finish in Premier League Top Half - 1/8
  • To Win the FA Cup - 16/1
  • To Win the Europa League - 14/1
Football – Premier League

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