Sheffield United: What type of welcome did Wales star David Brooks get when he returned to Bramall Lane?
If David Brooks thought the red carpet treatment awaited when he returned to training with Sheffield United yesterday, the Wales international will have been sorely disappointed.
Less than 24 hours after making his full debut for Chris Coleman’s side, the youngster was summoned back to South Yorkshire to begin preparing for tomorrow’s Championship fixture at Burton Albion.
Although Chris Wilder admitted everyone at Bramall Lane was “proud” and “delighted” by Brooks’ performances against France and Panama, the United manager said: “He will be back, he’s back this afternoon. There’s no recovery day for him in the swimming pool or whatever, signing autographs. Seriously, we’re delighted with his progression and very proud of him too. I don’t think anyone is surprised.”
Brooks, aged 20, won his first Wales cap as a second-half substitute against France last week before starting Tuesday’s home friendly with Panama.
Wilder, asked if Brooks’ man-of-the-match display in Cardiff would provoke a clamour for him to feature at the Pirelli Stadium, replied: “People can clamour all they want but, unfortunately, there’s only one man who has to pick that side.
“We’ve got a load of good players. There’s a debate at times; should we rotate, switch, play him up top or whatever? I’m fine with that, it’s all about opinions.
“We have to pick a team we think will get a result at Burton, and get that result with the substitutes too.”
Meanwhile, Wilder has confirmed goalkeeper Jamal Blackman is “fit and available” for selection after missing the win over Hull City due to a back injury. But George Baldock remains a doubt despite being cleared to resume training following a hamstring/calf complaint.
“Jamal is fit and he’s trained for the last week,” Wilder said. “He’s back in contention. George will have trained before the game and so we’ll assess him. Richard Stearman, Samir Carruthers, Ben Heneghan, James Hanson and Clayton Donaldson played in a behind-closed doors friendly last week.”