Adam Phillips is aiming for the Premier League with Burnley, five years after it appeared he might get his chance with Liverpool.

The Clarets youngster, 21, was highly-rated coming through the ranks at Anfield and drew comparisons with a certain Steven Gerrard during his years with the Academy.

The midfielder's displays at youth level earned him a call up to the first team squad for a pre-season tour of America in 2014 when Phillips, just 16, played the second half in a 2-1 defeat to Brondby.

The likes of Phillipe Coutinho were in the side that day and for Phillips it was a taste of what might come.

He was back among some of the world's elite a little over a year later when he was part of the Reds squad that travelled to Bordeaux for a Europa League game.

 

He didn't figure in the matchday 18 but collected valuable experience training with the likes of Coutinho, Adam Lallana, Roberto Firminio and Divock Origi.

Ultimately Phillips fell short of making the breakthrough on Merseyside after a series of injuries – in particular a troublesome back problem – slowed his progress.

Liverpool made the decision to release him in 2017 and two years later, via spells with Norwich City, Cambridge United and Scottish side Hamilton, the all action midfielder is back at a Premier League club.

While he hasn't graduated from the Clarets Under-23s to first team status just yet, he is aiming to create an impression on boss Sean Dyche.

"I want to just keep playing, stay fit and get games under my belt, train hard and hopefully I will get an opportunity to go up to the seniors sooner rather than later," said Phillips, who has skippered the Under-23s this term with the youngsters unbeaten in all competitions so far this season.

Adam Phillips trains with Liverpool before a Europa League tie in Bordeaux in 2015

"It is always nice to be captain. I am becoming a bit of a leader, on the pitch in the training ground and in the changing room before the game.

"I just give some of the young lads a bit of advice whenever they need it. The likes of NeJai (Tucker) and Rico (Lewis Richardson). Sometimes they take too many touches on the ball and I might get after them a bit but they are young players and they are still learning and I want to improve myself as well as giving advice to others."

Phillips is growing into a player that can help those around him, as many senior stars did when he was coming through the ranks at Liverpool.

"Being around the top players you learn a lot," said the 21-year-old of his experiences in the first team set up with the Reds.

"You have to try and take it all on board and I try and use that with the younger players I work with now that I can try and help and the advice I have been given I can try and give to them and hopefully do my best for the team and keep working hard."

Should the all action midfielder, who signed a one-year contract when he joined the Clarets in the summer, reach the Burnley first team it will be the fulfillment of a dream and also prove Liverpool legend Gerrard right!

The Reds great and current Rangers manager sent Phillips a text after he was released by Liverpool, something that helped fuel Phillips' desire to get back to the big time.

"I was told I wasn't getting a new contract at a meeting with the Academy director Alex Inglethorpe and obviously it was a very tough time," he said.

Adam Phillips alongside Toni Gomes after Liverpool's FA Youth Cup win over Ipswich in 2015

"It is never nice being told you have to leave a club you loved a a young lad.

"But I never contemplated giving up as I love the game and I had worked hard to be where I was.

"Getting a text message from Steven Gerrard, my idol, telling me 'keep going, you're a great young talent and have a bright future' gave me a lot of confidence moving forward.

"To hear that from such a legend was amazing.

"I just kept going as I feel I want to prove to people that I was good enough to play the highest level, I still feel that way to this day."

If Phillips can keep pulling the strings for Burnley U23s then he may well get his chance.