Twelve months ago, only his family, friends and Sheffield United’s coaching staff could provide a detailed lowdown on David Brooks.
But, as he prepares to represent England in this afternoon’s Toulon Tournament final, the teenager is now one of the most talked-about young talents at Bramall Lane.
Brooks has made rapid progress since graduating from United’s youth system, making four senior appearances during a season which ended with Chris Wilder’s side being crowned League One champions.
Described as “the star of the show” on his debut for the Young Lions, Steelphalt Academy manager Travis Binnion believes the 19-year-old’s displays in France are the result of his “superb attitude” and work ethic.
“David can get goals and he can play that last pass,” Binnon said. “Those are two lovely attributes to have. He always tries to be positive in everything he does out there on the football pitch and is constantly looking to get involved.”
“On top of that,” Binnion continued, “He’s shown a superb attitude by continually chipping away at his weaknesses and also working on his strengths. Brooksy just wants to keep on getting better. You can see how training with the first team here, and playing for them too, has really brought him on.”
Brooks started Thursday’s 3-0 victory over Scotland, which set-up today’s meeting with Ivory Coast in Aubagne, before being substituted just past the hour. With Neil Dewsnip’s side leading 3-0 at the time, that suggests the United midfielder is likely to be handed a prominent role against Les Elephants.
“There are lots of people who deserve credit for bringing Brooksy on,” Binnon said. “To be fair to the lad, though, I think it’s time he took some himself.”
Meanwhile, Dominic Calvert-Lewin, another product of United’s academy, is expected to feature when England face Venezuela in tomorrow’s under-20 World Cup final.
Speaking ahead of the contest, which takes place in Seoul, the centre-forward said: “We’ve seen that Venezuela are a good team,” he revealed.
“They’ve been on the other side of the draw and are going along quite nicely.
“It will definitely be a tough game but if we can bring our best performance to the party, we will be just fine.”
Former United loanee Harry Chapman has also made the trip to South Korea and Calvert-Lewin, now of Everton, added: ““It’s what we’ve come here to do, get to the World Cup final and hopefully we can go on to win it now, but I’m just buzzing at the moment. We’ve worked all year for this moment, it’s where we want to be.”