Ethan Brooks revels in Bafana Bafana call-up and reacts to Owen da Gama sacking

accreditation

Brooks, 20, has emerged as one of the most promising players in South African football over the past 12 months since being afforded his top-flight debut by da Gama.

His impressive displays in the triumphant 2021 Cosafa Cup also earned confidence from Bafana head coach Hugo Broos, who's now selected him for every 2022 FIFA World Cup qualifier thus far - something he's not taking for granted.

"It's really an honour and privileged to be called up to the national team again, so I'm just really excited to go out there and showcase my talent if I do get an opportunity," he said.

"It's really important that we go out there and win back-to-back [against Ethiopia] it will keep us on top of the log in terms of wanting to qualify."

11. Augustine Mahlonoko (Baroka FC) – 19 years, 3
11. Augustine Mahlonoko (Baroka FC) – 19 years, 3 months & 11 days (Orlando Pirates 1-1 Baroka FC, 28 November 2020)
10. Thuso Mogale (Baroka FC) – 19 years, 1 month &
10. Thuso Mogale (Baroka FC) – 19 years, 1 month & 27 days (Baroka 0-2 Mamelodi Sundowns, 9 January 2021)
9. MacBeth Mahlangu (TS Galaxy) – 19 years, 1 mont
9. MacBeth Mahlangu (TS Galaxy) – 19 years, 1 month & 25 days (TS Galaxy 0-1 Stellenbosch FC, 6 December 2020)
8. Ethan Brooks (TS Galaxy) – 19 years & 23 days (
8. Ethan Brooks (TS Galaxy) – 19 years & 23 days (Mamelodi Sundowns 2-0 TS Galaxy, 15 December 2020)
7. Ally Msengi (Stellenbosch FC) – 18 years, 10 mo
7. Ally Msengi (Stellenbosch FC) – 18 years, 10 months & 5 days (Stellenbosch FC 1-1 Swallows FC, 25 October 2020)
6. Azola Tshobeni (Orlando Pirates) – 18 years, 7
6. Azola Tshobeni (Orlando Pirates) – 18 years, 7 months & 16 days (Maritzburg United 0-1 Orlando Pirates, 23 January 2021)
5. Ibraheem Jabaar (Stellenbosch FC) – 18 years, 3
5. Ibraheem Jabaar (Stellenbosch FC) – 18 years, 3 months & 28 days (TTM 1-0 Stellenbosch FC, 21 February 2021)
4. Fuad Johnson (Stellenbosch FC) – 17 years, 11 m
4. Fuad Johnson (Stellenbosch FC) – 17 years, 11 months & 25 days (Baroka 1-3 Stellenbosch FC, 10 March 2021)
3. Kayden Francis (Chippa United) – 17 years, 7 mo
3. Kayden Francis (Chippa United) – 17 years, 7 months & 19 days (Chippa United 1-1 TTM, 29 November 2020)
2. Keletso Sifama (Kaizer Chiefs) – 17 years, 5 mo
2. Keletso Sifama (Kaizer Chiefs) – 17 years, 5 months & 27 days (Kaizer Chiefs 0-3 Mamelodi Sundowns, 24 October 2020)
1. Roy-Keane Avontuur (Stellenbosch FC) – 17 years
1. Roy-Keane Avontuur (Stellenbosch FC) – 17 years, 2 months & 4 days (Stellenbosch FC 1-1 Swallows FC, 25 October 2020)
Scroll through the gallery to see the 11 youngest
Scroll through the gallery to see the 11 youngest players to feature during the 2020/21 DStv Premiership season

On da Gama's exit after the 4-2 defeat to Royal AM left them at the basement of the top-flight and without a win in five games, he conceded he owes a lot to the experienced tactician.

Da Gama was officially sacked on Monday and replaced by his assistant Shaun Bartlett in an interim coaching role before the FIFA international break.

"He gave me an opportunity to start with my career in the DStv Premiership so it's really sad to see him leave but I've learnt a lot from him," Brooks admitted.

"[Coach Shaun] is very big on having a lot of football knowledge so that's what I'm learning from him now as the coach so that's very important for me and everyone else here. So he is bringing in new methods, but we've been with him."

Brooks will be aiming to help the Rockets secure their first win of the season when they face newly-promoted Sekhukhune United on Saturday at the Mbombela Stadium (15h00).