Albion's Nathan Ferguson dreams of playing in Premier League
Albion’s hopes of selling Nathan Ferguson to a Premier League side have been boosted after the defender said it’s his dream to play in the English top flight.
Ferguson had been set to join Crystal Palace in January after the two clubs agreed an £11million fee with £1 million in add-ons.
But the move collapsed at the last minute when Palace picked up a problem with the defender’s knee during his medical.
Out of contract this summer, Ferguson’s future seems destined to be away from The Hawthorns – with the fee Albion receive likely to be decided by a tribunal.
If he leaves for another English side, Albion will expect to get something near the £11million they negotiated in January.
But should he go abroad, they will be due less than £300,000 under Fifa’s compensation rules for players who move overseas.
In an interview with students from the University of Warwick, however, Ferguson said he doesn’t see himself playing aboard anytime soon.
“As an English player, any English player’s dream is to play in the Premier League,” he said. “That is what they wish for.
“So to hopefully get the chance to play in the Premier League, it’s surreal that is for sure.”
When asked if he’d like to play abroad, Ferguson continued: “You can’t shut anything off.
“Everyone’s goal is to play at the highest level they can play at and win the most amount of trophies they can win.
“Maybe in 10 years time I’ll end up in Germany – if I feel that’s the right move, that’s the right move.”
Ferguson looked set to spend the 2019/20 campaign playing for Albion’s under-23s.
But head coach Slaven Bilic spotted his potential after just two training sessions and made it clear to the teenager he saw him as an integral part of his team.
Ferguson’s reluctance to hold talks with Albion over a new deal has frustrated Bilic and the club’s hierarchy.
But the teenager has nothing but praise for his boss.
“I like Slav,” he added. “As a manager you can speak to him at any moment. It’s hard not to like him.
“Maybe when you see him on TV he can come across as stern.
“But he is a good manager and you can see by where we are now he knows what he is doing. And he knows how to make players better.
“For Slaven to give me a chance to prove myself and show what I am about means a lot.
“I do cherish what he gave me.”