In the Pipeline: FA Youth Cup star Zak Brown

West Brom’s academy is never short of attention. At the moment the club have numerous players currently trying to make the leap into senior football and with James Shan now in charge of the first team, there’s arguably never been a better chance to get your break as a young Baggie.

Shan was previously in charge of the club’s U23 side and as a result will know a lot of the young players coming through very well.

This season has seen the likes of Kyle Edwards, Rekeem Harper and Sam Field receive more minutes in the first team and the latter was particularly impressive last Monday during his first appearance under the new manager.

However, there’s a young player coming through who with the right guidance has the possibility to surpass Field.

Zak Brown has been impressive for the U23s and U18s this season and it might not be long before we see him get a first-team chance.

The 18-year-old is a box to box midfielder by trade and was one of the star players from West Brom’s promising FA Youth Cup campaign this term, featuring in all five matches.

Albion managed to get to the semi-finals before eventually succumbing to Manchester City, but they did knock out Arsenal on their way.

And in that game against the Gunners, Brown was hugely influential. He didn’t score, but against a highly technical Arsenal side, he dictated the game intelligently and looked after the ball tremendously well.

He’s a highly skilled player at both ends of the pitch and that stood out on that occasion, as a lively West Brom performance saw them hassle their opposition constantly.

His vision also catches the eye and in 14 U18 Premier League matches this term, he’s claimed three assists. He’s also been among the goals and netted against Wolves only last week.

Shan will know all too well about Brown already. The midfielder played under him in the development team last season and it would be a fine story if they were to link up again at senior level.

Having been with the club since the age of seven, it would mean the world to him if he was to get his first-team opportunity.