Liverpool striker Rhian Brewster scored three and assisted one as England sealed a 4-1 win over the USA in the quarter-finals of the U17 World Cup.
Brewster is part of an exciting group under Steve Cooper, and has played a focal role in the Young Lions’ successful run at the tournament in India.
It was the 17-year-old’s free-kick in their 3-2 group-stage win over Mexico that ultimately sealed progress to the knockout stages, where England have gone from strength to strength.
The Reds youngster was on target in the penalty-shootout win over Japan in the last 16, setting up a quarter-final clash with the USA.
And taking to the Fatorda Stadium in Goa on Saturday afternoon, Brewster produced his best performance yet as England ran rampant on their way to the semi-finals.
His first goal came in the 11th minute, when goalkeeper Justin Garces palmed Phil Foden’s cross into his path on the edge of the six-yard box, finishing expertly on his first touch.
Brewster’s next came just three minutes later, when the excellent Foden threaded the ball through for him to run onto and chip Garces on the charge.
The youngster was then instrumental in England’s third, interchanging with Morgan Gibbs-White surging forward, before sending a low cross into the box for the Wolves midfielder to convert.
The US grabbed one back through Josh Sargent on 72 minutes, but such was England’s dominance the result was already a foregone conclusion, compounded when Brewster was brought down in the box deep into stoppage time.
Brushing himself off, Brewster sent the ball low to Garces’ left and sealed his hat-trick, the Young Lions’ victory and a place in the semi-finals.
Brewster’s time in India can prove invaluable, particularly as the teenager has set his sights on a first-team place at Liverpool in the near future.
“I get on with my team-mates at Liverpool and when I’ve trained with the first team, they’ve always welcomed me and it’s been good,” he told TheFA.com.
“I’ve trained with Jurgen Klopp a few times and he’s a real character. He’s been good and happy towards me.
“So I’m hoping to prove that when I go back, as well as at this tournament, I can be with the first team.”
While Klopp will no doubt take a patient approach, success at the U17 World Cup could see Brewster make his mark on the German, having already made it onto the bench on one occasion.
Elsewhere, the Liverpool U18s sealed a 5-2 victory at home to West Brom on Saturday, with goals from Curtis Jones, Adam Lewis and Paul Glatzel, and a brace from Liam Millar.