With four goals and an assist through the USA’s four matches at the 2017 CONCACAF U-20 Championship, Brooks Lennon has been a key piece in pushing the U-20 MNT to the brink of qualification for this summer’s World Cup in Korea Republic.
Here are five things you should know about the U-20 MNT and Real Salt Lake forward:
Before his parents, John and Elizabeth were accomplished marathon runners and triathlon participants (including the Boston Marathon and the Ironman World Championships), the two athletes were standout in their own respective sports. Elizabeth, now a fitness instructor, played tennis and lacrosse at the University of Virginia. An All-American selection and member of the Denison University Hall of Fame, John would go on to play soccer professionally for the Cleveland Cobras of the old American Soccer League.
Brooks’ brother Riggs has also made a name for himself in the soccer community. The forward, who played at Virginia before transferring to Creighton, received call ups to the U.S. U-17 MNT and also played at Real Salt Lake’s Arizona Academy. Riggs most recently spent the 2016 season playing for Lane United FC of the Premier Development League.
Real Salt Lake Product
One of five members of the current U.S. U-20 MNT to hail from the Real Salt Lake Academy based in Casa Grande, Ariz., Lennon shined for the club’s youth sides, racking up 51 goals in 68 games during the course of three seasons with the U-15/16 and U-17/18 teams.
Lennon particularly impressed during his final season with the RSL Academy, tying for the league lead with 31 goals in helping the side to the 2014-15 U.S. Soccer Development Academy championship match.
Signing on Merseyside
Shortly after finishing the 2014-15 U.S. Soccer Development Academy season, Lennon made a high-profile move in signing with English Premier League giants Liverpool.
Joining the red half of Merseyside on July 31, 2015, Lennon largely turned out for the club’s U-23 side and tallied two goals in 12 appearances during the 2016-17 Premier League 2 campaign.
Real Salt Lake Return
Looking for more immediate first-team playing time, Lennon joined Real Salt Lake training camp this past January and impressed enough for his original club to work out a season-long loan with Liverpool.
Following the conclusion of the 2017 CONCACAF U-20 Championship, Lennon will return to Rio Tinto Stadium, where he’ll look to help Jeff Cassar’s side return to the M.L.S. Cup Playoffs this season.
Taking CONCACAF by Storm
The 19-year-old attacker has been an important cog in Tab Ramos’ side at the 2017 CONCACAF U-20 Championship, recording four goals and one assist in the team’s first four matches
After the U-20 MNT fell 1-0 to Panama in their opening match, Lennon put the team on his back, piecing together a hat trick as the side rebounded with a 4-1 win against Haiti. His opening goal in last Friday’s 4-1 victory against St. Kitts & Nevis sent the U-20 MNT on their way to the Classification Stage.
Once there, Lennon’s 29th minute corner kick found captain Erik Palmer-Brown for the U-20 MNT’s game-winner in a 1-0 victory against Mexico, putting the U.S. on the cusp of qualification for the 2017 FIFA U-20 World Cup.
Heading into their final Classification Stage match Friday vs. El Salvador, Lennon is making a play for the tournament’s Golden Boot, as his four goals tie him for second with Panama’s Ricardo Ávila, just two back of Mexico’s Ronaldo Cisneros.