Why Brentford star's rise to Premier League is great news for Worthing
Fin Stevens’ amazing journey to the Premier League can help Worthing snap up some of the best young football talent in the region.
That’s the view of Woodside Road boss Adam Hinshelwood after the former Mackerel Men youngster helped Brentford reach the promised land – and landed a new long-term contract.
Stevens, who has only just turned 18, was on the bench as the Bees beat Swansea in Saturday’s Championship play-off final. That came just over a fortnight after he’d signed a new three-year Brentford contract.
Stevens came to Brentford’s attention during a spell in the Worthing side that belied his age.
Hinshelwood hopes many other young players will be inspired by his rapid rise to fame.
Worthing fans have been quick to congratulate Stevens, who can play in defence or midfield, and Hinshelwood revealed the young star was still in a WhatsApp group with many of the squad.
“Fin is a player I’ve admired since I first saw him play. I knew he’d go far but he’s certainly achieved a lot in a short space of time. You could see he had quality but he also had, and has, exactly the right attitude. When you’ve got both, you’ve got a real chance of doing well.”
Hinshelwood said Stevens was pushing for a first-team chance at Worthing when he was 16 and the management had to tell him to be patient. But his chance soon came and he impressed at Isthmian premier level. Now he will be champing at the bit for a Premier League debut in 2021-22.
Hinshelwood said Stevens’ rapid progress was a signal to others that Worthing was a club at which a fledgling career could blossom.
“Our whole ethos now is to attract young players to the club through the academy and Fin’s story will help us do that,” he said. “We’ll develop good young players and give them chances in our first team.”
Worthing have been further boosted by one of their current youngsters, forward Tom Chalaye, being picked for England Colleges.
He has scored three times in 13 Worthing games. Hinshelwoood said: “I’m delighted for Tom. He deserves it. He’s shown what he can do for us in front of goal and did well on loan at Burgess Hill. He’s another player we think highly of and we wish him good luck with the college squad.”