The joint-national declined a German U21 call-up in favour of the US senior side.
German-American defender John Anthony Brooks has declined a call-up to the German under-21 side in order to play for the full US men’s national team.
Brooks was born in Germany to a US serviceman so, as per FIFA’s guidelines on matters of joint nationality, he may choose which country he represents at international level.
Having already represented both Germany and USA at under-20 level, as is permitted by FIFA, whichever team Brooks had chosen to play for in this scenario would be bound to him for the rest of his footballing career.
Whilst playing at levels below full international would still usually allow switching of national allegiances, it was widely anticipated that Brooks would have been called up to the German U21s to face the Faroe Islands in a U21 European Championship qualifier. As this will be a competitive match, regardless of its level, it would have registered Brooks as German.
Instead, 20-year-old Brooks will be named in Jurgen Klinsmann’s squad to face Bosnia in a friendly match in Sarajevo on August 14th.
Brooks is quite the hot prospect in his native Germany, having played 29 matches at centre-back for Hertha Berlin as they stormed to promotion from the 2.Bundesliga as champions.
Brooks is the second promising young player in a fortnight to upset expectations by choosing to play for the USMNT. AZ Alkmaar’s wonderkid Aron Johannsson controversially snubbed his adoptive homeland Iceland, much to the delight of American fans. These exciting developments prove just how quickly football in America is growing.