The superb form and cult status of Ben Brereton’s Blackburn Rovers in Chile has earned him a £ 20million link with Sevilla and the Champions League.
The 22-year-old striker, from Meir Park, is also apparently wanted by Leeds and Southampton, who bought his former strike partner Adam Armstrong for £ 15million this summer.
He has scored 16 times in 20 league appearances so far this season, dropping close to his 17th on a few occasions on Saturday upon returning to Stoke City, the club he grew up supporting.
He chipped Adam Davies in the first half but saw his shot whistle past the far post – then a well-saved shot by Davies late with Blackburn en route to a 1-0 victory.
The Sun adds: “The rovers don’t want to lose Brereton-Diaz so quickly, but they are under pressure to balance the books and it would be hard to resist a huge offer. The South American has a few more years on his contract and the Armstrong sale means Rovers owners, Venky’s, can hold on for the money. ”
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Brereton went to school at Meir Heath and Blythe Bridge and was on the books for Manchester United as a teenager before joining Stoke for a year at the Under-16 level.
He moved to Nottingham Forest when he did not receive a scholarship, then signed for Blackburn for £ 7million in 2018.
It wasn’t an immediate achievement, having scored just five goals in his first two and a half years at Ewood Park, but he has taken off since that summer’s surprise international call-up.
He spoke to the Lancashire Telegraph ahead of Saturday’s game of his childhood heroes in red and white.
“I grew up on a season pass, with friends and family, back in the Delap and Fuller days.
“I loved Ricardo Fuller and Mama Sidibe, it was really good.
“I was there for about a year, before the stock market, only for a year, and then I went to Forest.
“I was young and they didn’t offer me anything, I had a few months off for football, then I went to Forest. I was a young boy who was still finding his way in football and I was only there for a year.