After spending his whole football life at Carlisle United, commuting on a regular basis from his Millom home to Brunton Park, Liam Brockbank quickly got over the disappointment of his release from Cumbria’s premier club this time last year.
He returned to play for United in the Cumberland Cup Final and ended up with a winners medal following a deserved victory over Penrith
Like many before him, he switched from youth football to the rigours of the senior game but found the transition an easy one thanks to Steven Rudd and Danny Grainger.
“I couldn’t wait to get started,” he said, adding, “and knowing Danny and Ruddy made it an easy decision to join Reds.”
Now, nine months later, Liam can reflect on a successful first season at Borough Park, one which saw him register 35 appearances in the left full back role.
“It’s just disappointing the way the season finished that we don’t have anything to show for all the hard work everyone at the club contributed, because we were on track to finish successfully.
“But I’ve enjoyed every game I’ve played for Reds this season.”
We first saw him in a red shirt last summer in the pre-season matches and the teenager created an immediate impression both on defensive duties and venturing forward down the left flank. He scored his first goal for the club, a fine twenty five yard drive, in the friendly at Gretna.
That paved the way for his NPL debut against Pickering Town on the opening day of the season.
“My personal highlight was scoring my first league goal at Marske and I also enjoyed the game at Kendal with two assists helping Brad Carroll to his hat-trick with the fans behind that goal going nuts!
“That was the best performance for me, we were relentless for the ninety minutes, everybody just wanted to get involved and get a goal and there was no easing up.
“It was a great day with the support unreal and we got the big win we deserved.
“The away game at Pontefract wasn’t the worst performance but it probably felt like it at the time because of the huge support that day. We were unlucky not to nick a point but, in the end, it was a disappointing loss because they were near the top too.”
Liam has thoroughly enjoyed the training this year and believes that’s the view of the whole squad.
“”Even in the worst of the weather Danny and Steven have given us a session that we can all take something from whether it’s fitness or tactical for game day.”
And whilst on fitness matters Liam is already doing his off season schedules and will be stepping up gradually over summer in readiness for pre-season.
“I’ve been out running and doing gym sessions at home every day and then playing football with my brothers in the garden.”
But the day job has suffered because of the Coronavirus lockdown and as an employee for RITC, Liam’s work in local schools has ceased – for the time being at least.
Brock’s career, by his own admission, is just getting underway but if the first year is any yardstick the talented eighteen year old has plenty to look forward to.